Bristol Academy: Club poised for 'biggest ever' game with Frankfurt

Dave Edmondson
Dave Edmondson has been in charge of Bristol Academy since January 2014
Women's Champions League quarter-final first leg: Bristol Academy v Frankfurt
Venue: Ashton Gate Date: Saturday, 21 March Kick-off: 14:00 GMT Coverage: Full commentary on BBC Radio Bristol

Captain Grace McCatty says Bristol Academy's Champions League quarter-final with Frankfurt will be the biggest game in the club's history.

Women's Super League side Bristol face the three-time European champions at Ashton Gate on Saturday in the first leg of the tie.

The Vixens then travel to Germany for the return leg on Sunday, 29 March.

"Without a doubt it is the biggest game we have ever had," defender McCatty, 25, told BBC Sport.

Bristol overcame Barcelona 2-1 on aggregate in the last round and are the only English club remaining in the competition.

"I remember the days when we were bottom of the league and now we are competing at the highest level," McCatty added.

"It's amazing to do that and for the club that I love makes it an even more massive game.

British teams in the Women's Champions League
2014-15: Bristol Academy and Glasgow City - quarter-finals
2013-14: Birmingham City - semi-finals; Arsenal - quarter-finals
2012-13: Arsenal - semi-finals; Birmingham City - last 32
2011-12: Arsenal - semi-finals; Bristol Academy - last 32
2010-11: Arsenal - semi-finals; Everton - quarter-finals
2009-10: Arsenal - quarter-finals

"The fact that I will lead the club out as captain will make it more special."

Glasgow City are also through to the quarter-finals and face Paris St-Germain at Aidrie's Excelsior stadium on Sunday.

"It's brilliant for the whole club to be at this stage," said City head coach Eddie Wolecki Black.

"We're going to have to play very well, no doubt about that. We're going to have to be well organised, our game plan will have to be bang on.

Meanwhile Bristol endured a difficult WSL campaign last season, finishing seventh with five wins from 14 games.

Although they prospered in Europe, boss Dave Edmondson has had to rebuild his squad following the departure of several senior players - including former club captain Corinne Yorston and Spain internationals Laura del Rio and Natalia Pablos Sanchon.

But McCatty says the Vixens will be ready to compete with Frankfurt, who have won the women's Bundesliga seven times.

"We are definitely confident, with the work we have put in, that we will be the best prepared we could be for this game," she added.

"We are looking to take something from the home leg - at least a draw - so that sets us up when we go to Frankfurt."

Sophie Watts (left) and Angharad James
Nikki Watts (left) scored the penalty which sent Bristol through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League at the expense of Barcelona