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Manchester United Women 1-0 Arsenal Women: Ella Toone strike sends United top

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Ella Toone
England Under-21 international Ella Toone struck the decisive blow

Ella Toone’s late strike sent Manchester United top of the Women’s Super League for the first time and ended Arsenal’s 100% start.

Jess Sigsworth chased down a loose ball and squared unselfishly for Toone, whose low shot went in via the post.

The Gunners had racked up 29 goals in their opening five WSL wins, but struggled to carve out chances.

Arsenal goalkeeper Manuela Zinsberger prevented further damage with a superb save from Christen Press’ low shot.

United were dealt a blow before kick-off with the loss of England forward Alessia Russo, who is to have surgery on a hamstring injury suffered in training on Friday.

But it was the Reds who created the better chances in a tight game as Joe Montemurro’s free-scoring side failed to create a significant goal threat or build any pressure for record scorer Vivianne Miedema to exploit.

United States international Tobin Heath shot wide of the near post and Toone fired over after a dangerous run from Leah Galton as the pressure built on the visitors.

Just as it seemed United would be frustrated, up popped Toone to seal a fifth straight league win for Casey Stoney’s side and maintain their unbeaten start to the campaign.

‘It looked high, reckless and dangerous’

Stoney felt Arsenal should have been reduced to 10 players early in the second half, after Lotte Wubben-Moy was only shown a yellow card for a lunging tackle on Galton.

“I couldn’t believe it was a yellow,” Stoney said. “I’m far away, so I’m only judging it from far away, but it looked high, it looked reckless and it looked dangerous.

“I wasn’t pleased with it as a tackle to be honest, so yes I did think there should have been a more severe punishment.

“[Beating Arsenal] is massive for the players’ mentally and belief – going into these games – that they can compete, they can win, because a winning mindset is really important.

“You have to have belief first, that you can do it, so I think they’ve got that now.

“I actually thought we created some really good chances, and I thought we were really positive in our attacks. If I’m honest, we were the worthy winners today, on the balance of the game.”

Arsenal boss Joe Montemurro: “We’re at fault. We were beaten by the better side tonight.

“It’s about ability, and doing what you need to do under the circumstances – we didn’t. They were better than us.

“They deserved to win over the 90 minutes and I can look at the tactical structures, the organisation and where we didn’t do things, but in the end, we weren’t able to cope with what Man Utd threw at us.”

Line-ups

Man Utd Women

  • 27Earps
  • 17Batlle
  • 4Turner
  • 21Turner
  • 11Galton
  • 12LaddSubstituted forZelemat 66′minutes
  • 14Groenen
  • 18HansonSubstituted forSigsworthat 45′minutes
  • 7Toone
  • 77HeathSubstituted forStaniforthat 78′minutes
  • 24PressSubstituted forJamesat 71′minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Ramsey
  • 3Okvist
  • 9Sigsworth
  • 10Zelem
  • 16James
  • 19Ross
  • 37Staniforth

Arsenal Women

  • 1Zinsberger
  • 3Wubben-MoyBooked at 52minsSubstituted forMaierat 78′minutes
  • 6Williamson
  • 22SchnaderbeckSubstituted forMaceat 90′minutes
  • 15McCabe
  • 21GutSubstituted forRoordat 60′minutes
  • 13Wälti
  • 7van de DonkSubstituted forLittleat 59′minutes
  • 9Mead
  • 11Miedema
  • 19Foord

Substitutes

  • 10Little
  • 14Roord
  • 18Williams
  • 20Maier
  • 24Stenson
  • 30Mace
  • 32Pearse
  • 33Garrard

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