Man United break City’s unbeaten start to season

Katie Zelem of Manchester United Women Manchester City Women vs Manchester United Women, WSL football match, Etihad Stadium, Manchester, UK - 07 Sep 2019 Photo: Lynne Cameron for The FA

Manchester United hosted rivals Manchester City in the Continental Cup on Sunday. The home side rode out victorious, putting an end to the WSL leaders’ unbeaten run.

Before the 2-0 victory over Man City in the Conti Cup, Casey Stoney told her side, “You belong at this level, you’ve got to start believing it.”

Stoney knew what United had to do to avenge their previous defeat to current the WSL leaders.

Continental Cup chaos

It didn’t take long for the Reds to get on the front foot in the Continental Cup derby. For the opening goal, Hayley Ladd was fouled on the edge of the box, resulting in a United free-kick.

Captain Katie Zelem stepped up and curled a superb strike past Ellie Roebuck. The girls in red wheeled away in celebration as they applauded their skipper.

Zelem’s goal proved to be one of the few chances in the first 30 minutes as the game became scrappy and tightly contested. However, United’s midfield three of Ladd, Zelem and Jackie Groenen proved to be pulling the strings and taking control of the game. 

Despite Lauren Hemp and Caroline Weir looking their biggest threats, City struggled to really create anything that threatened Mary Earps.

Ten minutes into the second half, Kirsty Hanson flew down the right flank and found Jess Sigsworth, who poked the ball into the back of the net with a typical goal-poacher finish. 

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Matters grew worse for the blue side of Manchester as Keira Walsh was given a straight red card following a rash challenge on Hanson. Using the extra player to their advantage, United enjoyed the majority of the ball – creating a few chances but ultimately seeing out the game. 

The Red Devils secured a famous victory against a City side who lost just one domestic game in the entirety of last season. 

The Cityzens proved they are deeply missing Aoife Mannion already who has been ruled out due to an ACL injury.

Having lost their first two games United have now won three on the bounce and look to build momentum for their next game against Reading.

A massive win stopping their rivals on a sublime run of form will definitely be a boost for Manchester United.