Preview: City’s title hopes continue as they host Everton

Credit: Andrew Yates/Sportimage

Manchester City’s title hopes will continue as they welcome Everton to the Academy Stadium on Sunday.

Gareth Taylor’s side will be looking to extend their current run of form in the Women’s Super League. City are currently unbeaten in 11 league games. 

The Sky Blues enter the match fresh off a midweek victory in the Champions League. They put three goals past Serie A side Fiorentina, giving them the advantage going into the second leg. 

City are only two points of leaders Chelsea, so a victory over Everton is vital to stay in the title race. 

Previously, Manchester City travelled to the home of English football St. George’s Park to face Birmingham. In which they comfortably won 4-0 a brace from Sam Mewis helped them to secure all three points in Staffordshire. 

Georgia Stanway scoring Manchester City’s second goal in the Vitality Women’s FA Cup Final, November 1st 2020. (Photo by Manchester City FC/Getty Images)

The Opposition

Willie Kirk’s side have had a mixed run form since the turn of the year, drawing twice and winning once. 

Everton were last in action against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday at The Hive. 

French international Valerie Gauvin gave her side a strong lead inside the opening 20 minutes after successfully converting two spot kicks. 

A header from loan player Jill Scott helped secure all three points for her team as she cancelled Davison’s equaliser. 

The Toffees currently sit fifth in the table, just four points behind Arsenal with a game in-hand on the top three teams. 

Form Guide

Manchester City: WWWWW

Goals scored: 20

Goals conceded: 2 

Everton: WLDDW 

Goals scored: 9 

Goals conceded: 6 

Previous Meetings

Between the two sides there have been three meetings over the past year in various competitions. Including the Vitality Women’s FA Cup final in November. 

Manchester City have won on all three occasions with an aggregate score of 9-2. 

Everton came close to succeeding Manchester City in the FA Cup final after Gauvin headed in an equaliser from a corner. Added time proved the difference as City were 3-1 winners when the final whistle blew.

City’s most recent victory over their guests this weekend came back in December when Caroline Weir provided a hat-rick of assists in the first half in Merseyside. Lauren Hemp also featured having come off the bench. 

Ones to watch

Manchester City: Lauren Hemp

(Photo by Matt McNulty/Manchester City FC/Getty Images)

Hemp had a spell on the sidelines and missed a total of seven league games after suffering a hamstring injury.  

She made a return to action as a late substitute in the reverse fixture against Everton back in December. 

Since then, the 20-year-old has shone and delivered some impressive performances for City. 

She has made seven league starts, scoring  five goals including her flying header against Arsenal in early February. 

In return she has also provided three assists helping her team to climb their way up the table. 

Everton: Valerie Gauvin

Valerie Gauvin for Everton during the Women’s Super League match against Birmingham City at Walton Hall Park, 7th February 2021. (Photo by Nina Farooqi/@beanhive)

The France international has returned from a muscle injury she suffered in the FA Cup Final defeat back in November. 

Gauvin made her comeback in a 4-0 victory over Bristol City after being brought on in the 67th minute back in January. 

Since returning, she has looked dangerous to any opposing defenders, taking 19 shots in seven starts, according to FBRef.

The young forward has discovered her form again after tucking away two penalties past Mikalsen in the Spurs goal at the weekend.

Manager’s Notes

Gareth Taylor: “We’ve managed to be successful against them a couple of times this season but it won’t be easy.

We will do our normal thing. Its important to get back to back home games and its a game we are looking forward too.”

Willie Kirk says he hopes to have a fully fit squad to choose from ahead of Sunday’s game, however he will be without Jill Scott who is ineligible to play due to her being on loan from Manchester City.

Manchester City vs Everton will kick off on Sunday March 7 at 2pm. You can watch live on the FA Player.

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