‘I know that talks are continuing’ – Marc Skinner on Lucía García’s Manchester United future

Lucía García celebrates scoring for Manchester United at Aston Villa in October 2023. (Natalie Mincher/SPP)

Manchester United Women are in discussions about extending Spain international Lucía García’s time with the club, says manager Marc Skinner.

The 25-year-old joined United from Athletic Club Femenino on a two-year contract in July 2022, with the popular forward among those with deals due to expire this summer.

Of that contingent, England goalkeeper Mary Earps’ future has taken most of the headlines, but captain Katie Zelem and top scorer Nikita Parris are others now in the final months of their contracts.

An extension for Leah Galton was announced at the end of January, but changes are afoot at United following Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s deal to take a 27.7% stake in the club, with his INEOS group taking over football operations.

The club’s head of women’s football, Polly Bancroft, was confirmed last month as departing at the end of the season to become Grimsby Town CEO.

Ahead of Sunday’s away game with West Ham United, manager Skinner, whose own deal expires this summer, was asked by She Kicks in this morning’s press conference about García’s future.

“Firstly, congratulations to Lucía on the (UEFA) Nations League win (with Spain) and making the Olympics; fantastic for her and obviously the Spanish nation,” he began. “Talks are continuing on (her contract) as well.”

“I think you know by now that the conversations are off-field; I do all the on-field stuff, that’s my focus. I know that talks are continuing.

“She remains a really important player for us. She’s really kicked into her own this year, which I’ve been really pleased with.

“So, once we do have updates on any of the players, I think same for everybody, continuously ongoing, you’ll be the first to hear once we know what those confirmations are.”

García’s compatriot, United midfielder Irene Guerrero, was not part of the Spain squad for this past international break, which saw the world champions beat Netherlands and France to win the UEFA Nations League.

After helping her country to World Cup success, Guerrero joined United in September from Atlético Madrid, but the 27-year-old has had her season disrupted by injury.

Having recently returned to fitness, she has mostly been named on the bench, but did start against Manchester City in the Conti Cup on 24th January.

Photo: Jayde Chamberlain

Skinner was asked about her progress, in relation to the adaptation process he feels is necessary for players joining United from overseas.

“So, I’ll tell you specifically why they need to adapt: because almost every team has a different style in the WSL. You play (against) direct play, you play possession-based, you play transitional, you play counter-attacking, you play teams that will just literally bank in, they’ll play mid-block then they’ll press.

“There’s so much variance…and one thing Iri has got used to is she’s come from a style where, in Spain, it’s positional-based; ours is positional-based but it also has decision-making processes in there. I think it’s just her getting used to everybody else.

“I often say this: it’s sometimes not about the individual. So, it’s not about Iri not getting it, it’s about working the partnerships together.

“You look at Lucía (García) last year, she was a fantastic impact player for us, but this year, she’s grown and understood, her language is fantastic, and so is Iri’s, but it’s those little understandings of the team. So, sometimes, it’s not even the player, it just takes time to get used to the way we play that has been different to the way she’s played before.

“She’s coming along, she’s progressing nicely, her understanding every day is getting better. Hopefully, before the end of the season, you can get to see some of that in games.”


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