Manchester United women were back at Old Trafford for women’s football weekend as they looked to get the double over West Ham, with Chelsea not playing until Sunday, Man United had the chance to end the day at the top of the table.
But it wasn’t as straight forward as they may have expected it to be as the Hammers managed to keep them at bay until the break.
The game started and the Reds were dominating play, and that showed because after 10 minutes of play, the hosts had 88% possession.
However, they couldn’t make that count as the visitors slowly started creeping their way into the game.
There was concern on the Man United bench however when Mary Earps went down in the 16th minute of the game following a cross with Maya Le Tissier landing on her goalkeeper’s foot and substitute shotstopper Sophie Baggaley was sent out to warm up.
However, a few minutes later following some treatment, the world’s Best goalkeeper got back to her feet with a huge cheer from this bumper crowd at Old Trafford.
Earps was called straight into action when West Ham had a chance though, although it was straight at the ‘keeper who could catch the ball and get rid of it.
As the half progressed, the home fans were getting frustrated inside the Theatre of Dreams as referee Emily Heaslip waved away two penalty shouts.
Shortly after, the referee blew the whistle and the players were down the tunnel heading into the break. The hosts would have been the more frustrated of the two sides heading into the break, but were level in the reverse fixture back in September before scoring two in the second half.
Minutes into the second half and Russo was brought down in the box by Cissoko, and the referee pointed to the spot. Captain Katie Zalem stepped up and scored the opening goal of the game, with Old Trafford erupting in the process.
United were in control following the goal, and West Ham were just about dealing with all that pressure.
Eventually, that pressure was too much to handle for the Hammers as substitute Lucia Garcia scored her 4th goal in the league this season and United’s second of the game.
Old Trafford was bouncing and were rewarded again in the 85th minute as Hayley Ladd scored to all but secure the three points for the Red Devils.
Into added time and Garcia scored her second of the game and United’s 4th, meaning her side will end the day top of the Women’s Super League.
Just over 29,000 fans inside the stadium on Saturday afternoon, and the majority left smiling with a huge three points in the bag.
A big game on the blue side of Manchester tomorrow, as Chelsea travel to the City Football Academy to take on Man City, but will the Reds neighbours do them a favour, or will Chelsea go back to the top of the table?