In November 2019, more than 75,000 fans attended Women’s Super League and Championship fixtures during the inaugural ‘Women’s Football Weekend’, which included Tottenham v Arsenal at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and Liverpool v Everton at Anfield.
Today’s Manchester derby was the opening game of this weekend’s behind-closed-doors version, in which six WSL fixtures will be staggered and can all be watched via television or streaming platforms live without clashes.
United headed into this game top of the WSL following last weekend’s 1-0 win over champions Arsenal, but City put in a dominant first-half display to lead through Chloe Kelly and Kelly Coombs.
However, Tobin Heath struck soon after the interval to give United hope – and Kirsty Hanson volleyed home to seal a 2-2 draw for United to extend their lead at the top of the table to two points – for now, at least.
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Full-time! Man Utd 2-2 Man City
Well, who could have predicted that? Man City utterly dominated the first half, and were well worth their 2-0 lead at the interval – even if their second goal was offside during the build-up.
However, City wasted plenty of chances, and United took their opportunities ruthlessly after the break as Casey Stoney’s side showed real resolve. It’s not a win, but United will take plenty from that as they extend their lead at the top of the table to two points… for now, at least.
We’re into the final few seconds, and City have the ball…
United look the more likely late on with City tightening up at the back after conceding twice in this half. Still, they don’t look like they’re quite done yet…
A contentious free-kick goes United’s way on the halfway line. The hosts have the late pressure, but City are holding firm at the back.
We will have four minutes of injury time here. Plenty of time for late drama…
89 mins: So close for United!
The hosts very nearly score a likely winner from the corner, but Stokes clears off the line. She also did well to position her body to block with her midriff – a loss of concentration after a long battle could easily have resulted in a panicked handball, and with it, mostly likely the game.
James has been excellent for United since coming on, and cleverly buys a free-kick 40 yards out on the right. The hosts win a corner as City clear their lines.
87 mins: City change
Late change for City as Park is on for Stanaway, who was excellent in the first half but faded after the break.
City gets forward on the left, but United block out a couple of shots in the centre. That has typified their defensive improvement after the break, but the visitors are still stretching the play well.
It’s tense out there, and nobody wants to be the one to make a late mistake.