Tonight: The NWSL Challenge Cup kicks off
The NWSL season begins with a rematch of last year's Challenge Cup title game.
Manchester United 1, Arsenal 0 (Highlights)
GOALS: Ella Toone (Jess Sigsworth) – 83’
With Everton’s sobering 4-0 loss to Chelsea earlier Sunday, a chance to move into first place in WSL standings was well within reach for Manchester United 一 and that was an opportunity United would take advantage of, as the squad handed Arsenal their first loss of the season behind a late goal from midfielder Ella Toone. With 16 points, Manchester City now boasts a 5-1-0 record, remaining undefeated through six matches in the 2020/2021 season.
Here’s how it all went down:
In the opening minutes of the match, Manchester United maintained possession in the attacking third, stringing together passes and creating several early scoring chances in the process. Though their efforts went unrewarded on the scoresheet, it was certainly a promising start for the club against a talented Arsenal squad.
In the 22nd minute of the match, Tobin Heath connected with Christen Press in the box. Looking to draw first blood for United, Press met the cross in the air, redirecting a volley that sailed just over the crossbar.
Later, it was Press knocking on the door again, this time receiving a through ball from Ona Battle, breaking away from two Arsenal defenders with her first touch, and getting off a close-range shot on goal. The chance would be denied by Arsenal goalkeeper Manuela Zinsberger to maintain the 0-0 deadlock with only 16 minutes remaining in the first half.
With neither side finding the goal in the first half, finding a go-ahead score was the priority for both squads as they entered the second. In the 46th minute, Tobin Heath curved a shot just over the crossbar and out of bounds, a near-goal that would have given Manchester United the edge they needed to control the contest. With a number of United’s shots on goal resulting from the efforts of Heath and Press, the Americans continued to prove their value to their new club since their move to the UK in September.
After a lackluster performance in the first half, Arsenal found themselves with a refreshed sense of urgency, desperately trying to regain the upper hand in a contest thus far controlled by United. Late in the second half, a pass was fed to midfielder Kim Little, who was left unmarked on the left wing. Little took her space, playing in a cross that found Caitlin Foord making a run into the box. On her first touch, Foord redirected the cross towards the lower ninety but was met with a diving save from United goalkeeper Mary Earps.
Good save! ????♀️@1maryearps keeps the score level.@ArsenalWFC are just starting to grow into this game...— Barclays FA Women's Super League (@BarclaysFAWSL) November 8, 2020
Watch LIVE on the FA Player!
???? https://t.co/oRKaD5gwbM#BarclaysFAWSL pic.twitter.com/SZPn5w4Hw1
Finally, in the 83rd minute, Manchester United got the opportunity they had been vying for all game when forward Jess Sigsworth was given space in the attacking third. In a showcase of her quick footwork and abilities on the ball, Sigsworth remained composed, cutting the ball to her left foot to beat an Arsenal defender and finding teammate Ella Toone just outside the eighteen. On her first touch, Toone slipped a shot towards the left corner of the goal, her attempt hitting the near post and deflecting into the back netting. Toone’s goal would come at an opportune time, granting Manchester United a 1-0 advantage late into the second half and sealing their move into first place in WSL standings.
GOAL!— Barclays FA Women's Super League (@BarclaysFAWSL) November 8, 2020
It's homegrown @ellatoone99 with a lovely finish!
Look at what it means ❤️
Finally @ManUtdWomen make the pressure pay, but can they hold on?
Watch LIVE ????https://t.co/oRKaD5gwbM#BarclaysFAWSL pic.twitter.com/AhDUA2tiok
Manchester United vs. Manchester City @ 7:30 a.m. EST
Aston Villa vs. Birmingham City @ 9:30 a.m. EST
Everton vs. Reading FC @ 11:30 a.m. EST
Bristol City vs. Tottenham @ 1:30 p.m. EST
West Ham vs. Brighton & Hove Albion @ 7:30 a.m. EST
Arsenal vs. Chelsea @ 9:30 a.m. EST
Use code JWS for 25% off of any purchase.