Nikita Parris says ambition, not money, was behind her move from Manchester City to Lyon

Nikita Parris, left, played for Manchester City until the summer (PA Images)
14:37pm, Mon 04 Nov 2019
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Lyon and England star Nikita Parris has said her move to the French side was motivated by ambition rather than money.

Parris left Manchester City in the summer to play for the French league's top side - they have won 13 consecutive domestic titles and also pay their players more than any of the Women's Super League sides. 

She said: "I think English teams need to understand that sometimes it's not about wages. Sometimes it's about the ambitions of the club.

"As a player, you want to win the Champions League. It's as simple as that. There's only so many times you can go into a season wanting to win all of the domestic trophies but forgetting about the Champions League," Parris told The Mail.

Parris says she didn't want her career to "plateau" at Man City after winning so much at the English club.

Parris said: "I've won one league title, two FA Cups and two League Cups and there comes a time when you don't want your career to plateau.

"A Champions League medal is the next one I want in my cabinet."

Parris, middle, had help from Lioness team mate Lucy Bronze, left, in her move to Lyon (PA Images)

Parris joined Lionesses team mate Lucy Bronze at Lyon and has had great support from her England colleague.

She said: "I wouldn't have been able to do it without Lucy. To be honest, she was unbelievable. It's the first time that I have lived alone and I'm adjusting to a new country and culture — and doing my own cooking and cleaning. But there were lots of calls home in the beginning saying, 'Please come out to visit me'."

The language barrier has been a challenge but Parris said she's giving it her "best shot."

Parris said: "Sometimes when I'm trying to speak French all of the words come out wrong and the girls in the dressing room laugh at me.

"The hardest thing I find is when I'm sitting in a team meeting and the coach (Jean-Luc Vasseur) is speaking French. As soon as he starts to repeat it and slow down I can pick it up, but sometimes I'm just sitting there thinking, 'What?'"

Parris is also optimistic about The Lionesses despite their recent bad run, with just one win in their last five.

The 25-year-old added: "As players and as a manager, Phil (Neville) is thinking about the long-term goals; the Olympics next year and the home Euros in 2021, and about building a sustainable winning mentality.

"Ultimately, when we put that gold medal around our necks at the Olympics, is anyone going to remember the run that saw us win one in five? No, nobody is going to remember that."

England play Germany this Saturday in a potentially record-breaking match at a sell-out Wembley Stadium. If the home of English football does fill all of its 90,000 seats it will break the attendance record at a women's match in the UK, which currently stands at 70,584. 

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