A harsh lesson on an historic day

Leicester City Women 1 Manchester United Women 3

Report by Kate Thompson

As someone who played football when it was still banned, I have been delighted with the new emphasis on the women’s game and the publicity it is getting.  I have also been impressed with the way Leicester City have embraced its women’s team and given them tremendous support. 

Winning the Championship last season was a great achievement but this match, along with last Saturday’s, demonstrated that there is a large gulf between the top two tiers and, although it is early days, Leicester look like it is going to be a difficult season.  There was a sizeable crowd – given as 4,473 – with a lot of young children and women.  One difference between this game and the Premier League is that there were three Manchester United supporters sitting near me!

City were under the cosh from the first minute and Levell in goal was by far the busiest keeper.  It was no surprise when Manchester scored in the 36th minute with an absolute screamer that the keeper had no chance of stopping. 

As early as the 15th minute Turner of Manchester had to be carried off on a stretcher with her right leg strapped, but it did not seem to put the team off their stride.  City were lucky only to be one down at half-time but Manchester scored a second very soon after the restart. 

Despite their dominance, Leicester continued to press and were unlucky when a goal-bound shot was saved by the Manchester keeper, when it looked as if City would break the deadlock.  They did get a goal in the 61st minute from Abbie McManus, who poked the ball over the line and, although the Manchester players hooked it back out, the referee indicated that it was a goal.

Sadly, this was as good as it got.  Manchester scored a third in the 71st minute and I lost count of how many times they hit the goalposts.  According to the stats, Manchester had 33 shots, of which ten were on target, compared with City’s ten shots and three on target.  But credit to the team, they never gave up and hopefully they will have more successful days in future. 

City: Levell, Howard, Brougham, Plumptre (c), Purfield (De Graaf 56′), Bailey-Gayle (Devlin 45′), Pike, Tierney (McManus 56′), Paul (Smith 56′), Flint, Sigsworth.

Subs not used: Lambourne, Camwell, Brown, Powell, Brooks.

Goal: McManus 61’

The views expressed in this report are the opinions of the Trust member nominated to file the report only and do not represent the views of the Foxes Trust organisation