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The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
John Brewin

Manchester United 1-3 Manchester City: Women’s Super League – as it happened

Khadija Shaw celebrates after charging down Mary Earps’ clearance to put City 3-1 up.
Khadija Shaw celebrates after charging down Mary Earps’ clearance to put City 3-1 up. Photograph: Jason Cairnduff/Action Images/Reuters

United defender Hannah Blundell spoke to Sky Sports: “Against the run of play we got the penalty, then the disallowed goal spurred them on and let them have momentum and we need to figure out how to switch that.We will come back stronger and I know we will with this team. We have a lot of players who can put in the performance and there is a togetherness in this team.”

Gareth Taylor, the City manager, spoke to Sky Sports: “There’s a huge feeling of pride playing like we did in such a big spectacle. When you turn up to Old Trafford and there is a huge crowd there, it is a completely different game to any other normal WSL game.

“I thought the two goals we scored in the first half were actually the hardest chances, there were some easier ones [not taken]. So yeah work for us to do still but credit to the players.

“We were thrown into another situation again with another red card. We can’t have too many complaints about it, but we are prepped for those situations now. Fair play to the players that came on, they helped us to manage the game and helped us to nullify any chances United had. “

Suzanne Wrack was at Old Trafford to report on the game.

Here’s the table, looking very healthy for Chelsea.

Pos Team P GD Pts
1 Chelsea Women 7 18 19
2 Arsenal Women 7 9 16
3 Man City Women 7 8 13
4 Man Utd Women 7 9 12
5 Tottenham Hotspur Women 7 5 12
6 Liverpool FC Women 7 -1 11
7 Leicester Women 7 -3 8
8 Brighton & Hove Albion Women 7 -7 7
9 Aston Villa Women 7 -9 6
10 Everton Women 7 -9 5
11 West Ham Women 7 -9 4
12 Bristol City Women 7 -11 4

Here’s the latest from the rest of the WSL action on Sunday.

Full-time: Manchester United 1-3 Manchester City

Old Trafford is blue, and City were by far the better team, scoring great goals from Jill Roord and Lauren Hemp. Bunny Shaw’s goal was a stroke of luck but City pushed harder and harder. They also responded so well to going a player down after their red card. United will be hugely disappointed. They couldn’t get close to their rivals.

90+10 min: City back in United’s half, where they began the game, and as they pushed United back from the start of the second half.

90+8 min: It’s just not happening for United. Those 11 minutes offered hope. But they haven’t been able to sustain a push for that long.

90+7 min: City fans singing now. They fancy their chances of their team taking this one home.

90+5 min: Riviere, somehow, finds herself unmarked but her shot across goal is stopped by Keating. Then Geyse has a shot, now Zelem. And Keating lies on the ball. The goal has to come soon if United are to find their way to a draw.

90+4 min: Garcia smashes in a shot, the ball bouncing all over the area, only to be cleared.

90+3 min: United pouring it on, and Geyse at last escapes a defender, only for her pass to be cleared by Roord.

90 min: 11 minutes (eleven) added on. Can Skinner’s team pull off another comeback?

90 min: Laurent Hemp departs the scene, to be replaced by Mary Fowler. Last throw of United’s tumbling dice.

89 min: Garcia, so lively since coming on, looks the one player capable of opening up City. The problem is that City have so many people back in numbers.

87 min: Zelem and Geyse, the United creative players, have been stymied. Been a decent tactical exhibition by City in pressing hard, and Shaw’s decisive goal was an object lesson in chasing down an opponent.

85 min: 43, 615 – that’s the crowd, as announced by the Old Trafford PA man, Alan Keegan. That’s a record.

84 min: City are seeing this out quite comfortably considering their numerical disadvantage.

82 min: Two City changes: Hasegawa, Kelly off, Houghton and Coombs on. Chloe Kelly did not want to go off at all.

81 min: Steph Houghton, the veteran, is imminent for City as Gareth Taylor looks to lock down his defence.

79 min: A United shot at last. It’s from distance from Garcia, and is saved by Keating. The City goalie goes down with an injury. It looks a timely knock.

77 min: United delayed their change when City had their numbers reduced. But here they come: Toone, Naalsund off, Miyazawa and Rachel Williams on.

75 min: Off goes Bunny Shaw, taking her time and booed as she goes. Kerstin Casparij comes on.

73 min: United begin to edge up, and City start to retreat.

Manchester City red card!

Now, that could change matters. Garcia is on the charge and pulled up as Aleixandri pulls her down. It was a tug of the arm, and a good decision. A second yellow for a clear tactical foul.

Manchester City's Laia Aleixandri is shown a red card by referee Cheryl Foster.
Manchester City's Laia Aleixandri is shown a red card by referee Cheryl Foster. Photograph: Jason Cairnduff/Action Images/Reuters


71 min: United haven’t had a shot his half. City so dominant in midfield and defence. A high-class exhibition from the visitors.

69 min: Garcia comes on for Malard. And joins the wall for a free-kick.

68 min: Shaw comes back on, to boos. There are more boos when Malard brings down a charging Shaw, and that’s the last we see of Malard.

66 min: Bunny Shaw is down again, this time after a clash with Millie Turner. That gives Marc Skinner time to speak to his players and re-arrange his team. Subs imminent

64 min: United have most of the ball but it’s all in their own half and whenever they get past the halfway line in come City defenders to close down the danger.

63 min: Alex Greenwood comes back and turns, and then launches the ball long in the manner of a box-kicking stand-off at rugby.

61 min: The City press is deep, and the likes of Geyse and Malard’s passing is being cut off before they can reach their targets.

59 min: Long way back for United, with City back and defending in numbers. The counterattack that is United’s best route to goal has been closed off.

57 min: Frankly, that was a gift to Manchester City. And Mary Earps, greatest living Englishwoman, has to take much of the blame.

Goal! Manchester United 1-3 Manchester City (Shaw, 55)

Oh my. Bunny Shaw is resurrected and she seizes on some awful play from United. Le Tissier and Earps get in a mess and Earps can only smash the ball off the knee of Shaw and it rebounds into the net. That’s good pressing but atrocious passing out the back.

Manchester City's Khadija Shaw (right) charges down Mary Earps’ clearance to put City 3-1 up.
Manchester City's Khadija Shaw (right) charges down Mary Earps’ clearance to put City 3-1 up. Photograph: Martin Rickett/PA
Shaw celebrates scoring their third goal.
Shaw celebrates scoring their third goal. Photograph: Jason Cairnduff/Action Images/Reuters


53 min: Bunny Shaw goes down, with nobody near her. She looks to be holding her neck in pain.

52 min: Hemp sets off at a rate but Riviere shows why she’s been brought on with her pace. A knee brace suggests when Riviere was only on the bench.

50 min: United try one of their fast counters but Zelem can’t find Toone. It’s far more scrappy than before. Both teams far more cautious, too.

48 min: An almost quiet start to the half compared to the first. United’s change was made in the hope of locking down the game.

A booking: Aleixandri’s hand-off on Ella Toone sees her receive a yellow.

46 min: There’s been a half-time United change: Jade Riviere replaces Nikita Parris, who was very quiet in that first half. That move, bringing on a full-back, pushes Leah Galton further forward.

Earlier today in Spain.

Half-time: Manchester United 1-2 Manchester City

A breathless half of the first women’s derby played at Old Trafford. City have attacked so well, and scored two fine goals while United have retained a genuine threat. It’s been high quality stuff, and more of the same, please, for the second half.

45+2 min: Malard, such an elegant player, almost sends Toone away but that offside trap is triggered once more. And then, Galton on the overlap forces a save from Keating in City’s goal.

45 minutes: Three minutes are added on.

44 min: Ella Toone gets back to clear when City’s Shaw was threatening.

42 min: City using offside a bit more and Nikita Parris is the latest United player to be found off.

41 min: Don’t be daft, more action! Ouahabi’s through ball finds Kelly, outstanding this half, and she forces a save from Earps and the post. It could be 1-3, 1-4, though it could also be 3-3 and 3-2.

40 min: A lull in play? Feels like both teams need to slow their heart rates down.

39 min: One minute United had the ball in the net, the next they were losing 2-1. It’s been a game to befit the occasion.

38 min: Adam K gets in touch: “I hope you’re well! Re swearing maketh the legend -- see also, Jill Scott getting a FOYFP tattoo. Just when we thought we couldn’t love her any more, etc etc.”

36 min: Marc Skinner is aghast on the sidelines. His team have failed to close of City’s movement though it has to be said that both goals were of very high quality.

Goal! Manchester United 1-2 Manchester City (Hemp, 35)

And another! United falling apart. Bunny Shaw has two chances to shoot, but then slips the ball to Hemp who whips it home. What a turnaround, what a game!

Lauren Hemp of Manchester City scores.
Lauren Hemp of Manchester City scores. Photograph: Alex Livesey/The FA/Getty Images


Goal! Manchester United 1-1 Manchester City (Roord, 34)

Chloe Kelly glides down the left, and her pass inside is pinpoint. Roord allows the ball to come back across her and scores….

Jill Roord of Manchester City scores.
Jill Roord of Manchester City scores. Photograph: Alex Livesey/The FA/Getty Images


United have a goal ruled out...

Geyse beats the offside trap, and her shot on goal is blocked. She recollects the ball and shoot and scores…the ref’s assistant has spotted that the ball had gone beyond the goalline on that second attempt. No VAR so the call stands…it seemed right, but you’re thinking Mitoma in Qatar these days, aren’t you?

30 min: Another corner to Manchester City, United’s Blundell raging. But United clear all the way out. Malard’s pass is a beauty and Toone just fails to follow it up with a reverse pass that finds Bunny Shaw running back…

28 min: It’s not lacked for entertainment at all, been really full-blooded stuff.

26 min: Chloe Kelly escapes down the wing, plays the ball back and Angeldal gets her shot saved. Then, Alex Greenwood makes her own penalty claim, the problem being that Geyse’s back rather than hand deflected her shot.

25 min: United looking dangerous now, with Roord having to come back to clear up as Nikita Parris tries to escape.

23 min: Rick Harris gets in touch: “Great that Old Trafford is being used for this game. Any idea what the attendance is? If United thrash City does that balance the books following the men’s team recent schooling?”

40,000 sold plus some walk-up, though the weather has probably kept a few people indoors.

Goal! Manchester United 1-0 Manchester City (Zelem, pen 22)

Zelem, right-footed, slots in the corner and Keating in City’s goal gets a hand to it. But the ball still rolls in.

Katie Zelem of Manchester United scores the team's first goal.
Katie Zelem of Manchester United scores the team's first goal. Photograph: Naomi Baker/Getty Images


Penalty to Manchester United!

Alex Greenwood handles from Malard’s shot. Not much to complain about. And there weren’t complaints. The arm was hanging down.

Manchester City's Alex Greenwood handles the ball from a shot from Manchester United's Melvine Malard and concedes a penalty.
Manchester City's Alex Greenwood handles the ball from a shot from Manchester United's Melvine Malard and concedes a penalty. Photograph: Jason Cairnduff/Action Images/Reuters


18 min: City chance, and a big one. Bunny Shaw is released and is through on goal and Earps makes herself big to make a save. End to end stuff.

17 min: More United impetus. Zelem’s free-kick is a beauty and Galton just fails to head the ball on target.

16 min: Big chance for a counter from United. Toone is released by Malard, and looks for Geyse but the pass is intercepted. That’s a let-off for City.

14 min: Jill Roord almost made her way through the United defence and it took Maya Le Tissier to deal Mary Earps out of trouble. The keeper had come running out.

12 min: But here come United, building up pressure, with first Toone and then Parris the target for passes from Katie Zelem. The second is offside. Still, better from United.

11 min: Six shots so far from City, three on target. Utter dominance.

9 min: First big chance, Roord scampers away down the left, slots the ball back inside and Hemp can’t beat Earps with a low shot.

7 min: Another City corner. This time it’s cleared easily enough but still United can’t get the ball in the opposing half.

6 min: Blundell plays the ball back to Earps who shanks the ball out. Nervy from United so far. Galton, usually an attacker, is back and facing Lauren Hemp. It looks like a key battle.

3 min: City have started well here. Really putting it up to United. Giving them no time on the ball.

And away we go at Old Trafford

1 min: The players take the knee ahead of kick-off, and City immediately force a corner, it causes problems, and eventually, with some relief, Mary Earps claims.

Huge noise and the Stone Roses pumping out. This is the one indeed. Massive cheers for Mary Earps, favourite for Spoty. Swearing maketh the legend. Just ask the Sex Pistols.


Old Trafford is the venue, the home of Big Red’s men’s team and despite its decay, still a storied old stadium. When it gets going, it can still get going. A light show starts proceedings off.

Weather watch, from a few miles down the road from OT. It is tipping down and has been for the last few days, too. Typical Manchester weather, though more like Norway if you ask me. Here, the culverts and drains are all overflowing.

Gareth Taylor spoke to Sky, too: “I think Alex Greenwood is vital to what we do, we have missed her. She has played in many big games so it is normal for her and a good boost for everyone but it is about the whole team stepping up.”

“The Manchester derby is perfect for us but nothing changes for our approach. We will give anything we can. We have got good options with a strong bench and will see how the game goes. But everyone has pushed hard in training this week and I like the things I have seen.”

More Marc Skinner and Sky chat: “Manchester City are an excellent team and there is going to be a game where we need to adapt within the game and the line-up does that.

“It is typical Manchester weather we know how tough it is going to be and so will Manchester City. We need to play with the freshness of a United team but I want to see a total performance and if we give that we will have a good day.”

Some full-time WSL scores from Sunday:

Everton 2-2 Bristol City
Brighton 0-3 Arsenal
Half-time scores:

Leicester 1-0 Tottenham
West Ham 1-1 Aston Villa

Gareth Taylor, the Manchester City manager, spoke on the club’s official website: ““It would be nice if it became more normal, that type of occasion, but I’m sure it will be the way things are going.

“It’s hard to say until post match [if players being phased by big stadiums still exist]. I think at the moment it will probably be the [case]. I can’t speak for United players in terms of how often they play there. I know they played there a few times last season.

“Some teams tend to use the main stadiums a lot. The more familiar it is and the more you do it, the more comfortable you feel in those surroundings. It’s really hard to tell you how the players will feel in that space.

“It’s great to have a good occasions in a main stadium in front of good crowd. It’s also being shown on television. I think it makes for a good spectacle.”

The Manchester United manager, Marc Skinner, spoke to Sky:

“It’s a special event. It is going to have lots of good football I’m sure. It is going to be a spectacle but we know what to do. We have been here before, we have grown in these derbies.

“We need to go and put in a performance in front of our fans at Old Trafford because they deserve it, and our players want to do that. I’m really looking forward to it. I want to see a growth from the last time we played last year. That’s going to be important.”

The teams

Man Utd: Earps, Blundell, Le Tissier, Turner, Galton, Toone, Zelem, Naalsund, Parris, Geyse, Malard. Subs: Ladd, Riviere, Evans, Garcia, Miyazawa, Williams, Middleton-Patel, Tullis-Joyce.

Man City: Keating, Ouahabi, Kennedy, Aleixandri, Greenwood, Roord, Hasegawa, Kelly, Angeldal, Hemp, Shaw. Subs: Houghton, Coombs, Fowler, Castellanos, Morgan, Park, Casparij, MacIver, Blakstad.



It’s the big one, at Old Trafford, and it’s third v sixth, though only two points separate Marc Skinner’s United from Gareth Taylor’s City. United have made an unbeaten start to the season, and City are rueing their surprise loss to Brighton. Will playing at the club’s ancestral home rather than Leigh Sports Village inspire them? City have a formidable away record this season.

Both teams would like a win to close the gap on leaders Chelsea, who smashed Liverpool on Saturday but are feeling the turbulence of a heavy schedule and that of losing their manager at the end of the season.

Kick-off at 4.30pm. Join me.

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