Manchester United vs Everton Match Recap
United end the season with a 2-0 victory over Everton; Ella Toone giving the hosts an early lead by scoring in the sixth minute. Manchester United had already secured fourth place, extending their already comfortable lead ahead of the fifth-placed Toffees. Read on for the Manchester United vs Everton match recap.
Toone and Kirsty Hanson added to their respective tallies, ensuring that the Reds finished the season with three consecutive victories.
Manchester United: Earps, Batlle (Harris 68), A. Turner, M. Turner, Smith, Staniforth (Galton 61), Zelem (c), Toone, Groenen, Press (Sigsworth 90), Ross (Hanson 61)
Substitutes not used: Bentley, Ramsey, Thorisdottir, Jones
Everton: MacIver, Sevecke, Finnigan, George, Wold (Lehmann 81), Scott, Christiansen (c), Pattinson (Gauvin 76), Sørensen (Graham 64), Raso, Emslie
Substitutes not used: Korpela, Boye-Hlorkah, Magill, Clemaron, Clinton
United were guaranteed a fourth place finish and were, therefore, focused on finishing the season with a win. Casey Stoney made two changes to the team. Jane Ross and Jackie Groenen both made the starting 11 after great performances in last week’s match against Bristol.
Stoney played Groenen in an attacking midfield position, moving Toone to the right for this final fixture of the season. Toone made the most of the space, scoring from her team’s first attack with an assist from Christen Press.
Press lofted the ball perfectly towards Toone, who finished up with a brilliant side-footed finish in the bottom corner. Toone is now in the double digits, having scored 10 goals this season for United.
Press kept the Everton defence on their toes as she ventured closer to getting a goal of her own. She provided a flurry of shots for United, all of which were blocked. Toone tried to capitalise on the rebound from Press’s second shot, but her attempt went right at keeper Sandy MacIver.
The Reds were the better team to start but had to work to keep their lead. Everton were out for blood and were not going to make it an easy win for the hosts. Defenders Amy and Mille Turner were called into action as the game approached the half, the former blocking Hayley Raso’s attempt before Millie Turner put herself between Izzy Christiansen’s shot and the goal, conceding a corner but keeping her team’s lead.
Everton got the final chance of the half. Clair Emslie drove past the United defence but saw her shot sail over the crossbar as the referee signalled the end of the half.
Christiansen forced Mary Earps into a save within the first 10 minutes of the half. Everton’s captain tried to loop it in from a corner, but Earps was better to it, collecting the ball easily.
On the other end of the pitch, Amy Turner had United’s first chance of the half. She connected with Katie Zelem’s free kick but her attempt shot just wide of the post. As ominous a threat as ever, Press tried her luck again with a show of some impressive footwork before seeing her effort whizz just past the goal.
United mounted the pressure as the game drew closer to an end, this time from Toone again. She curled the ball into the area in search of her team’s second goal, but it was just off target.
United eventually got their second goal in the 89th minute. Toone fired the ball into the area from a corner towards Kirsty Hanson, who only needed to nod it into the net to get her seventh goal this season. The Reds almost got a third goal shortly after, as captain Zelem’s free kick sailed just over the crossbar.
United end the season in fourth with a total 47 points from their 22 matches played. Champions League football was out of the question following last week’s results, as Arsenal established a formidable goal difference advantage, thus, securing their spot for European football.
Stoney’s side now focus their attention on the Women’s FA Cup fifth round, as they host Leicester City next week.