Ellen White scored two and Jill Scott grabbed the winner as Manchester City women progressed in the FA Cup at the expense of their neighbours and rivals. White’s gave the blues a 1-0 half time lead, before doubling the lead in the second half. United pulled a gal back, but Scott seemed to make the game safe with a third, before Lauren Hemp’s own goal gave United hope.
With an action packed FA Cup weekend involving both the men’s and women’s team, the City girls got the blues off to the perfect start by securing their first win on away soil at the local rivals, and progression to the fifth round as they look to defend the trophy they won last season.
With both sides playing a cagey game, it was likely that a goal would come from a mistake and it duly arrived on 30 minutes. Former City defender McManus attempted a back pass that fell way short of the keeper, and of all people to pounce on the error was White, who raced in and dinked the ball over the keeper to make it 1-0.
The blues had a glorious chance to make it 2-0 three minutes into the second half when White broke forward and released Tessa Wullaret. The Belgian cut inside the defender but curled her shot wide of the goal. United’s reprieve wasn’t to last too long. Seven minutes after that miss, Lauren Hemp’s left wing cross was met first time by White, who hammered home to double City’s advantage.
That should have been game over, but United had other ideas. Lauren James got in behind the City defence, turned inside the box and beat Ellie Roebuck at her near post to reduce the deficit and give the home fans hope.
That hope almost turned into a reality three minutes later when McManus appeared to have atoned for her earlier mistake. The defender met a cross at the far post and her shot appeared to have crossed the line before Roebuck clawed it back, and with no goal-line technology of VAR to check, it was down to the officials, who declared no goal, despite United’s appeals.
And to rub salt into the United wounds, City went straight down the other end and scored a third goal, which again should have been a killer blow to United. The reds failed to clear their lines and the ball fell to Scott, who hammered home to make it 3-1.
With three minutes of normal time left, a United corner hit a melee of players and the ball hit an unfortunate Hemp and landed in the back of the net to set up a nervy few minutes for the blues.
Seven minutes of injury time went up and, together with an additional four minutes through further stoppages, meant City nerves were stretched, but the blues hung on to claim their place in the fifth round.
Final Score: Manchester United Women 2-3 Manchester City Women