Manchester United failed to pick up all three points against Everton, as the Toffees held Marc Skinner’s side to a fair 1-1 draw in Walton on Sunday.
Martha Thomas returned to the starting line-up on Sunday, as Leah Galton, Ella Toone and Alessia Russo started behind her. Norwegian midfielder Vilde Risa also got a start beside Katie Zelem in midfield, as Hayley Ladd was replaced from the draw against Tottenham.
United started off on a really bright note, as they dominated possession and pressed high up the pitch while denying Everton any space to play in. And they took the lead very early on, as Russo carried the ball through the midfield on the counter-attack and combined with Thomas to set up Toone, who finished sweetly with her right foot.
Everton did earn a chance on the break themselves five minutes later, as Claire Emslie was set through on goal but she chipped the ball over Mary Earps and over the goal, missing arguably Everton’s best chance of the game.
United had a golden chance to double the lead soon, as Zelem’s free-kick was set up by Thomas for defender Valerie Gauvin, who failed to put the ball into the back of the net. A second goal could have been a fitting way to end the half, as United were on top for most of the first 45.
Risa and Thomas made way for Kirsty Hanson and Lucy Staniforth around the one-hour mark, as United looked to double their advantage. Everton looked much better in the second-half, as United afforded them more possession and territory but they still failed to carve out concrete chances.
But the Toffees grew in confidence as Kenza Dali had a shot sail over the bar. But United’s poor record of keeping it tight late in the game came to the fore once again, as Simone Magill capitalised on a communication error between Earps and Maria Thorisdottir to tap home an equaliser.
Toni Duggan had a great chance to put Everton in the lead through a free volley, but she fired right at Earps. At the end, United lived to regret their poor defensive record in the last 15 minutes.
Skinner’s side remained fifth in the league and they are now seven points behind Arsenal.