WSL: Manchester City sink Leicester in second league win

Lauren Hemp of Manchester City congratulates Laura Coombs.
Lauren Hemp of Manchester City congratulates Laura Coombs after Coombs scores their team's fourth goal against Leicester City at The King Power Stadium on November 07, 2021 in Leicester, England. (Photo by Graham Chadwick/Getty Images)

Despite an early scare, Manchester City returned to their winning ways by handing Leicester City a 4–1 defeat at the King Power Stadium.

With Leicester yet to get any points on the board, their first league meeting with Man City was always likely to pose a challenge. Gareth Taylor’s side were also in desperate need of a win, with only one victory in their opening five league games.

Starting XIs

Leicester

Levell; Brougham (Howard ’34) , McManus (c), Plumptre, Purfield, O’Brien (Devlin ’61) , Pike, Tierney, De Graaf (Flint ’61), Bailey-Gayle (Barker ’75), Sigsworth.

Manchester City

Taieb; Stanway, Scott, Greenwood, Stokes, Walsh, Angeldahl, Weir (Coombs ’77), Park (Beckie ’81), Hemp, White (c).

How it went

After their convincing victory over Leicester in the FA Cup, the Sky Blues were hoping for a similar experience as they travelled to the King Power Stadium.

Former Man United striker Jess Sigsworth however quickly put an end to those dreams as she fired the hosts into the lead less than two minutes into the game. A defensive error by the visitors allowed the No.9 to neatly tuck the ball past Karima Taieb, who was unable to get a hand to the shot.

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It wasn’t long however before last season’s runners-up regained their composure. The 24th minute saw a change of fortune for the visitors as a classic Caroline Weir shot placed the ball into the bottom corner of the net, bringing the game back level.

Just 13 minutes later, Keira Walsh added a second with an almost identical goal. Despite being forced to weather waves of attack, Kirstie Levell and her defence held firm to keep the deficit to a single goal going into half time.

READ: Why everyone should know the name Kirstie Levell

While Taylor’s side had plenty of opportunities to strengthen their lead, they once again could be accused of being wasteful in front of goal. Several shots were fired over the bar as others were squandered by a lack of composure in the final third.

It wasn’t until the 71st minute that Lauren Hemp finally added the long awaited third goal for the visitors. The No.15 deftly fired the ball across the penalty area into the bottom corner of the Leicester goal.

Just six minutes after being substituted onto the pitch, Laura Coombs capped off the scoring for the afternoon. The goal marks the No.7’s first of the season.

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Stand out players

Leicester

With Manchester City having 11 shots on target, Leicester keeper Levell was a vital asset for the Foxes. Her quick reflexes allowed her side to remain in the game despite their opponents dominating possession.

The shot-stopper had previously been nominated for October’s Player of the Month award, and her determined performance against last season’s league runners-up clearly demonstrates why.

Manchester City

Throughout Manchester City’s recent injury troubles, Alex Greenwood has been a much needed consistent presence in the Blues back line.

The No.5 has been the only recognised centre-back available to Taylor for the entirety of the season so far. With Leicester’s forwards looking capable of scoring every time the Foxes went forward, Greenwood’s defensive presence was vital in securing her side’s second league victory of the season.

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