The FA Women's Super League
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Manchester City Women 1-0 Manchester United Women: Weir seals win in front of record WSL crowd

By Emma SandersBBC Sport at the Etihad Stadium

Caroline Weir's stunning long-range strike gave Manchester City victory over rivals Manchester United in the first Women's Super League derby in front of a record crowd of more than 31,000 at Etihad Stadium.

Scotland midfielder Weir, 24, pounced on a loose clearance from Katie Zelem and drilled a powerful shot into the top right corner from 25 yards three minutes after half-time.

City had been frustrated in the first half and the visitors could have equalised late on through Jackie Groenen when she hit the inside of the left post with five minutes of normal time left to play.

The 31,213 in attendance was almost six times the previous WSL record of 5,265 that saw Arsenal clinch last season's title at Brighton's Amex Stadium.

With the women playing at the men's ground for the first time since 2014 off the back of England's World Cup exploits, there was a buzz of excitement around the Etihad beforehand.

Less than 1,500 had watched that Continental Cup tie against Everton five years ago, but this game had all the usual aspects you would expect from a local derby.

Within three minutes, City forward Janine Beckie was hassling United keeper Mary Earps and team-mate Georgia Stanway came close with a low strike from the edge of the area.

But it was visitors who caused the biggest problems in the first half as Demi Stokes struggled to handle Jess Sigsworth and Jane Ross on the right, while Leah Galton's deliveries were a threat from the left.

They should have taken the lead through Scotland striker Ross but her side-foot volley was tipped expertly away by teenage keeper Ellie Roebuck, before Groenen was inches away from pulling off a backheel flick.

In the end, City's quality came through and the home fans have the bragging rights from this opening weekend derby.

However, the record attendance may only stand for a day as a near-capacity crowd is anticipated at Chelsea's 41,000-seater Stamford Bridge stadium, where the Blues host WSL newcomers Tottenham at 12:30 BST, in a game shown live on BBC television on Sunday.

Cushing happy to repay the fans - reaction

Manchester City manager Nick Cushing: "This team has had the opportunity to play in front of 31,000 in our home stadium. We are just really pleased that we have repaid them with the win.

"This season I really believe it will be the most competitive WSL season and that's brilliant for the women's game.

"Caroline Weir can be world-class offensively. She sees things that people don't see. She needs to show that on matchdays. She has done that today."

Manchester United manager Casey Stoney: "I'm really pleased with the players, we played some really good stuff and created some really good chances. They're the fine margins at this level - if you don't take your chances you always leave the opposition in the game.

"I'm proud of the players, they tried to execute the gameplan, we set out to come and have a go and we did that.

"I have to be extremely proud of these players and where they've come from in such a short space of time."

Line-ups

Man City Women

  • 26Roebuck
  • 2Mannion
  • 6Houghton
  • 4Bonner
  • 3Stokes
  • 25WullaertSubstituted forLeeat 82'minutes
  • 8Scott
  • 24Walsh
  • 19Weir
  • 10Stanway
  • 11Beckie

Substitutes

  • 7Coombs
  • 9Bremer
  • 12Toland
  • 16Park
  • 17Lee
  • 34Benameur
  • 35Veiga Santiago Fidalgo

Man Utd Women

  • 27Earps
  • 12Ladd
  • 5McManus
  • 21Turner
  • 3OqvistSubstituted forTurnerat 56'minutes
  • 14Groenen
  • 10Zelem
  • 7Toone
  • 9Sigsworth
  • 19RossSubstituted forJamesat 80'minutes
  • 11GaltonSubstituted forHansonat 76'minutes

Substitutes

  • 2Harris
  • 4Turner
  • 15Mikalsen
  • 16James
  • 17Arnot
  • 18Hanson
  • 20Smith
Referee:
Rebecca Welch
Attendance:
31,213

Match Stats

Home TeamMan City WomenAway TeamMan Utd Women
Possession
Home62%
Away38%
Shots
Home11
Away9
Shots on Target
Home3
Away2
Corners
Home4
Away3
Fouls
Home9
Away6

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Manchester City Women 1, Manchester United Women 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Manchester City Women 1, Manchester United Women 0.

  3. Post update

    Hand ball by Georgia Stanway (Manchester City Women).

  4. Post update

    Jackie Groenen (Manchester United Women) hits the left post with a right footed shot from the centre of the box.

  5. Substitution

    Substitution, Manchester City Women. Lee Geum-Min replaces Tessa Wullaert.

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. Georgia Stanway (Manchester City Women) right footed shot from the right side of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Janine Beckie.

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Manchester United Women. Lauren James replaces Jane Ross.

  8. Post update

    Attempt missed. Kirsty Hanson (Manchester United Women) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is just a bit too high. Assisted by Jane Ross.

  9. Substitution

    Substitution, Manchester United Women. Kirsty Hanson replaces Leah Galton.

  10. Post update

    Corner, Manchester United Women. Conceded by Stephanie Houghton.

  11. Post update

    Attempt missed. Georgia Stanway (Manchester City Women) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Tessa Wullaert.

  12. Post update

    Attempt saved. Caroline Weir (Manchester City Women) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

  13. Post update

    Tessa Wullaert (Manchester City Women) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Ella Toone (Manchester United Women).

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Janine Beckie (Manchester City Women) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses the top right corner. Assisted by Tessa Wullaert with a headed pass following a fast break.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Manchester United Women. Conceded by Ellie Roebuck.

  17. Post update

    Attempt saved. Leah Galton (Manchester United Women) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Jackie Groenen.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Aoife Mannion (Manchester City Women).

  19. Post update

    Leah Galton (Manchester United Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  20. Post update

    Corner, Manchester City Women. Conceded by Abbie McManus.

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As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Man City Women11001013
2Brighton Women10100001
3Bristol City Women10100001
4Arsenal Women00000000
5B'ham City Women00000000
6Chelsea Women00000000
7Everton Women00000000
8Liverpool Women00000000
9Reading Women00000000
10Tottenham Women00000000
11West Ham Women00000000
12Man Utd Women100101-10
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