A 10-woman Manchester City managed to endure a 2-2 draw against Manchester United at the Leigh Sports Village on Saturday.
City have never lost to United in the Women’s Super League, but a sending off and a late rally by United with goals from Lucy Staniforth and Alessia Russo looked like their poor form was going to continue.
However, goals from Khadija Shaw and Ellen White ensured they left their rivals with a point.
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“It was a roller coaster of a game. When you’re looking at potentially a 2-1 loss, it’s reluctantly a fair point,” said city manager Gareth Taylor.
“The expulsion is going to affect us. I was very close. I thought it was a yellow card. I heard it was a bit high. I need to see it again.”
“I thought we showed great character, determination and spirit. I thought the girls did amazing in that regard.”
City were cut down to 10 players in 35 minutes after Georgia Stanway landed a high tackle on the upper thigh of Leah Galton, leaving little uncertainty for the referee by sending her off.
However, the exhausted team recovered directly from the sending-off with a goal three minutes later. Shaw headed off a Demi Stokes cross to give City the lead.
Taylor replaced scorer Shaw with Ballon d’Or nominee Ellen White at the hour mark in an effort to push City over the line.
Staniforth had other plans, however, and leveled at the sides in the 72nd minute with a heel strike near the goal that beat Karima Taieb.
The goal gave Marc Skinner’s team the momentum and Alessia Russo helped them take the lead in the 75th minute when her shot landed in the bottom corner of City’s net.
However, the ever-dependent White was there to put the city level back in the 78th minute when Mary Earps brilliantly defended a shot, but only until the England international, who made no mistake in her shot.