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Match Report

One A-Shaw-ed City performance in London

Bunny Shaw earned Manchester City all three points in their visit to Kingsmeadow

Gareth Taylor Man City_edited.jpg


18 February 2024

Manchester City won the clash of the top two in the Women’s Super League 1-0 thanks to Khadija Shaw’s first half goal. 

The win sees City move level on points and goal difference with Chelsea, only behind on goals scored, and end the Blues 22 game winning and 33 game unbeaten run at home in the WSL.

On a mild evening at a sold out Kingsmeadow, Erin Cuthbert had the first opportunity of the night for the hosts in the 5th minute but her shot was blocked by Alex Greenwood. A minute later, Khiara Keating easily claimed a Nathalie Bjorn header following a corner for the home side. 

Manchester City scored with their first chance in the 14th minute when Cuthbert was dispossessed in midfield by Jess Park and she played in Shaw who finished into the corner of the net.

A few minutes later, Shaw had another attempt but this time her shot drifted wide of goal for the Cityzens. 

In the 20th minute, Shaw had another shot but this one was saved by Hannah Hampton. From the resulting corner, Laia Aleixandri headed at goal but the Chelsea goalkeeper caught the ball.

A whipped in cross from the hosts was headed behind by Greenwood.  Guro Reiten saw an effort saved from the corner.

A Lauren Hemp dinked ball forward was gathered by Hampton just before Shaw could get to the ball on the half-hour mark.

At the other end, Chelsea appealed for a penalty after Mayra Ramirez went down after it looked like she had been caught by Greenwood but referee Abigail Byrne decided against giving a spot kick.


Fran Kirby saw her shot tipped wide after some nice build up play from the Blues in the 34th minute.  Cuthbert sent a shot from 30-yards over as the match approached half-time.


Niamh Charles got back to block an effort from Chloe Kelly after a break from the Cityzens in first half stoppage time.

Reiten was just unable to get her head onto Lauren James’ cross in the 47th minute when the Blues had the first chance of the second half.  Ramirez was too strong for the City defence but her cross was put behind for a corner.

Shaw couldn’t get on the end of Leila Ouahabi’s cross when the visitors had their first opportunity after the break shortly after.  Laura Coombs had the Cityzens next effort at goal but this was saved by Hampton.

Keating got to the ball just before Kirby almost immediately at the other end.   

Kelly’s inswinging cross in the 69th minute was headed over by Aleixandri as City looked to double their lead.  Park, who had been superb, run through centre of midfield eventually finishing with Kerstin Casparij firing over.  After another powerful Park run forward, Hampton kept out Kelly’s shot in the 73rd minute.

Second half substitute Aggie Beever-Jones put a shot over for the home side as she made her way forward.  Chelsea went close to getting an equaliser in the 77th minute but Cuthbert’s shot rocketed just wide of the post.

Into the final 10 minutes, and Cuthbert made a fantastic tackle on Shaw leading to an attack from the Blues which resulted in a corner. Charles’ cross reached Nusken but she couldn’t get enough on her shot and it was easily saved by Keating.  A Ramirez header from a corner was claimed by the City goalkeeper.

Hemp, on what was her 150th appearance for the away side, fired an effort wide as nine minutes of stoppage time were announced. 

Keating made a brilliant double save to stop a Cankovic shot then Nusken’s follow up in the fifth minute of additional time.   

Chelsea had a few half chances before Ramirez was unable to get onto a long cross forward and the visitors keeper gathered the ball.  Gareth Taylor’s side and fans celebrated when the final whistle was blown as they carried on their winning run and blew the title race wide open.

When speaking to the media after the match, Chelsea manager Emma Hayes thought her side had “started the game really well then conceded a poor goal and that affected us a little bit, the way we pass the ball, and we weren’t very dynamic with movement in the first half.” Hayes thought they should have had a penalty.  She continued by saying she thought they dominated the second half but they lacked the quality near goal.  Hayes felt they limited City chances but the “disappointing thing for us was our final third play”.

Taylor said he was “really pleased and is a big step for us” but he didn’t like the second half as he thinks they “can retain possession more or kill them off a bit more as they had some good counterattacking opportunities”.  He felt they defended “incredibly well”.  He added they are excited about the challenge with 8 games to go and “it is a big step, three points but we move on to the next.”


Line ups

Chelsea (4-4-2): Hampton, Lawrence (Nusken 72’), Carter, Bjorn, Charles, Kirby (Rytting Kaneryd 63’), Leupolz (Cankovic 79’), Cuthbert (c), Reiten (Beever-Jones 63’), James, Ramirez

Unused substitutes: Musovic, Ingle, Perisset, Mjelde, Buchanan

Booked – Cuthbert, James


Manchester City (4-2-3-1): Keating, Casparij,  Aleixandri (Kennedy 90’), Greenwood (c), Ouahabi, Hasegawa, Coombs (Stokes 90’+4), Kelly (Angeldahl 79’), Park (Fowler 90’), Hemp, Shaw

Unused substitutes: MacIver, Morgan, Blindkilde Brown, Mace

Goal – Shaw 14’

Booked - Kelly


Referee – Abigail Byrne

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