Rangers Women’s full-back Nicola Docherty said Steven Gerrard tried to help with his title challenge after offering tactical advice on a Zoom call ahead of the season’s resumption earlier this week.
The Rangers are at the top of the Scottish Women’s Premier League 1 (SWPL 1) due to the goal difference, ahead of reigning champions Glasgow City, who have won the league in the last 14 seasons, after seven games.
The 21-game season is expected to continue on Sunday after being suspended in January due to a surge in coronavirus cases.
Docherty and her teammates hope to achieve a historic club double by increasing the men’s Premiership title, and have been helped in the process by Gerrard.
“The main thing is that ‘one club’ mentality,” said Docherty. “The club has shown that they take the women’s game really seriously.
“We even had a Zoom call with Steven Gerrard. That was pretty big for us. He told us the club would take care of it. Ross Wilson (Rangers Football Director) and the directors are all very interested in watching the game Push women forward.
“Steven spoke to us about how to beat the low block and the things they came across and tried to help us.
“Rangers [men’s side] did fantastic in Europe and with the 55 [league titles] and now talk about Champions League football.
“The club wants to get back to the next level and there is a lot going on on the training ground. It’s an exciting time to be part of the club.”
Docherty, who won eight league titles during her time at Glasgow City before joining Rangers in February last year, wanted her game to replicate some of her male colleagues at the club as well.
“”[Borna] Barisic and [James] Tavernier are brilliant full-backs. That’s the kind of player I like to be too: an attacking full-back who uses crosses and makes dangerous deliveries.
“Hopefully I can copy Tavernier on one side and score a few goals soon!”
The forced absence from playing and even training with her teammates was “tough” for Docherty, but she praised the club for keeping in touch throughout the contact.
The Rangers travel to the bottom of Hearts on Sunday, entering the game after a three-game winning streak after beating Glasgow City 5-0 in their last game in December.
“The result against Glasgow City was a tremendous result for us. Glasgow City have long been the top team in women’s games.
“It’s just about playing things one game at a time. A season is not won or lost in a game.
“It was obviously difficult not to be on the training ground or around teammates. We are individual athletes and we play professional football. So it was just important that we maintain our fitness and get on our way when we do were prompted.
“The club have been brilliant at keeping in touch and making sure everyone is mentally well because that is what matters most, first and foremost.”
Hear the full Docherty interview on Thursday night on the Scottish Football Podcast.