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Match Report: Manchester United Women 2-0 Reading

by Zoe Hodges

Marc Skinner has won his first competitive game in charge of Manchester United women after beating Reading 2-0 in the opening game of the season.

It was a closely fought contest in the opening 25 minutes with both teams firing a shot over the bar.

United grew into the game with encouragement from the Barmy Army.

It was Kirsty Hanson who put the Reds ahead in the 39th minute after a perfectly timed pass from Ella Toone.

The Royals came out fighting in the second half and almost levelled the score as the ball ricocheted down off the cross bar but in the tangle of bodies it was unclear if the ball had fully crossed the line.

Moments later Ona Batlle, last year’s player of the season, doubled the home side’s lead with an absolute rocket of a shot which found the top corner.


Again, it was England international Ella Toone who orchestrated the move.

It was a commanding second half performance which saw minutes for substitutes Jackie Groenen, Alessia Russo and new signing Martha Thomas.

Thomas came close to scoring herself shortly after coming on whilst Groenen also had a shot on goal too.

It was hard to choose a player of the match, with Vilde Boe Risa impressing along with fellow new signing Hannah Blundell along with the two goal scorers.

Skinner seemed to enjoy his first game at home and helped to rally the 2000 or so supporters.

It was the first WSL game to ever be shown on Sky Sports and the Reds impressed under the lights and in front of the camera.

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