Manchester United Women rescued a point in the 98th minute this evening after falling behind twice to Brighton.
If United could get the job done down south, they would go up to second place in the table.
After a ten minute delay to kick off due to the ambulance, required for health and safety, being stuck in traffic, a minutes silence was held as the last post echoed round the ground. Then United got things under way.
Former United keeper Sophie Baggaley was forced into an early save, tipping Malard’s shot over the bar.
United gave away a free kick in a dangerous area. It was soft but still managed to get Le Tissier into the book. It was dealt with well by United as Earps rose to collect.
Pressure mounted on United’s defence as Riviere put a good block in to deny Brighton the opener. A corner followed, it was cleared but it came in again and a strong header was needed from Turner to keep it out.
Following another Brighton corner, Earps got down well to stop a shot nestling into the bottom corner.
United had good spells going forward but it was the Seagulls that made breakthrough, Terland with a tap in from six yards out.
The United fans at the opposite end thought Geyse had found an equaliser and her first competitive goal for the club but it bounced out off the inside of the post.
United were growing into this game, a good cross in presented a chance for the Reds’ top scorer last season, Leah Galton, but she headed over the bar.
The second half began and there was early pressure from United but there was no one there when Toone crossed it in.
Geyse took a shot from the edge of the area, she turned well and had loads of time but her shot was weak and easily saved by Baggaley.
It was starting to look like Geyse was never going to score!
After letting Terland get the wrong side of her, Riviere brought her down giving away a free kick. Luckily Brighton couldn’t capitalise on it.
The home side found the goal again but luckily the offside flag was up.
Geyse had another shot on goal but she hit it as she was falling and booted it out of the ground.
After not having such a good game, Ella Toone silenced her critics and redeemed herself after a brilliant strike from the edge of the area flew past Baggaley and got United back level with 12 minutes of the 90 left to play.
At the other end, Brighton came close but Earps pushed it out for a corner.
A corner for United in the dying moments of the game found the head of Williams who found the outside of the post.
The game was end to end now and Earps made another fabulous save but it was out for a last minute corner for the home side and they found the goal.
With seven minutes of added time to play, was there any hope for United? Losing this would seriously dent their title hopes even this early on in the season.
They were trying and after they won a corner in the 98th minute, the fans believed!
Earps came up and Zelem delivered. Super sub Rachel Williams broke from her marker and slotted it in at the back post. The United fans almost fell off the terrace as they celebrated wildly!
It was a point rescued, it was not convincing and left them sixth in the table but it was better than a loss and United fans would take that on their long drive home.
Team: Earps, Le Tissier, Blundell, Toone, Malard (Garcia 75), Zelem, Galton, Riviere, Hinata (Williams 75), Turner, Geyse