Tottenham 0-4 Manchester United: Mancunian delight as the Reds put on a clinical display to clinch three points

Looking to respond from a disappointing loss in their last league fixture at the hands of Manchester City, Tottenham tread familiar Mancunian territory as they host Manchester United at Brisbane Road Stadium. 

Grace Clinton was a notable omission from Robert Vilahamn’s Spurs side, with the young midfielder unable to take part in the clash against her parent club due to the terms of her loan contract. There would still be palpable excitement amongst the home fans though, with the return of captain Bethany England for her first appearance in the Barclays Women’s Super League since undergoing hip surgery in September.

TOT: Spencer; Neville, Turner, Bartrip, Zadorsky, Percival, James, Bizet, Naz, Thomas, England

MUN: Earps; Blundell, Le Tissier, Turner, Riviere, Zelem, Toone, Ladd, Parris, Galton, Malard

A chilly night at Brisbane Road kicked off in electric fashion, with both sides scrapping to maintain possession. The evening’s first attempt came from Celin Bizet Ildhusøy, though her long range strike found the safe hands of Mary Earps.

Tottenham began to cause problems for the visitors, as another surge forward saw a goal line scuffle cleared away in haste. The ball spilled out to an awaiting Angharad James, whose promising advance was saved again by a now stretching Mary Earps.

Despite Robert Vilahamn’s side looking explosive on the advance, Manchester United appeared threatening on the counterattacks. The Reds almost created trouble for Becky Spencer, before a clearing ball from Molly Batrip denied Melvine Malard of a one-on-one encounter with the Spurs keeper. 

End-to-end football was in store for the fans at Brisbane Road, as a denied strike from Hannah Blundell saw the Spurs explode forward on the counter. Jessica Naz expertly carried play into the final third, only for her searching ball to be blocked by a tracking Jayde Riviere.

The deadlock was finally broken as a searching ball from Hannah Blundell sailed through Tottenham’s last line of defence, narrowly avoiding contact with the boot of Malard as Manchester United roared into the lead in the 25th minute of play.

Embed from Getty Images

Skinner’s side began to take control of the tempo, entering the half-time break with a one goal advantage. The second half commenced with an even scrap, as both sides searched to capitalise after the break in play.

Just five minutes into the second half, Manchester United seized the opportunity to double their advantage. Malard gained possession with authoritative control, sending an expert ball into the flight path of a streaming Ella Toone – United’s number 7 found connection with an impressive chip over the head of an advancing Becky Spencer.

As the clock ran, Manchester United begin to assert clinical dominance over their North London opposition. Hayley Ladd gained possession on the edge of the area, offering the Reds another opportunity to add to their advantage. Despite an unmarked effort, her shot sailed across the face and behind for a goal kick.

A heavy collision saw Ladd collected inside the area, though no compensation was awarded for the action. It wouldn’t matter all too much for United though, as the loose ball spilled out to an awaiting Malard, with the French striker finding the bottom corner in powerful assertion.

Embed from Getty Images

Now trailing by three goals as they entering the fixture’s closing third, Spurs’ Bizet weaved through the United last line in an attempt to salvage the piling deficit. A weak effort from the Norwiegan was easily collected by a waiting Mary Earps though.

If Spurs’ grief wasn’t already plaguing, a high-flying finish from Hayley Ladd would be sure to dampen the spirits of the North Londoners. The Welsh midfielder’s clean finish added a fourth to United’s tally inside the final ten minutes of regular time.

The last fixture of Gameweek 9 in the Barclays Women’s Super League wrapped up at Brisbane Road Stadium with a dominant display from Manchester United earning them three points in the capital. The statement victory sees Manchester United trail within a one-point touching distance of their Mancunian counterparts, remaining fourth in the league table.