United’s previous game had seen them lose to Liverpool in the WSL and while that was a blow, they had a chance to get back to winning ways. Amidst criticism from fans about squad rotation - something that was also the case last season, Marc Skinner picked a rather familiar side for the tie.
Hayley Ladd and Katie Zelem started in midfield and despite impressive showings, Lisa Naalsund couldn’t start and neither did Phallon Tullis-Joyce, who was at least on the bench.
Mary Earps kept her place and the back four in front of him was a familiar one. Jayde Riviere, Maya le Tissier, Millie Turner and Hannah Blundell started, with the front four consisting of Geyse, Ella Toone, Lucia Garcia and Nikita Parris.
The Magpies made a swift start and created two early chances. But the Reds got a grip of momentum and began dominating possession soon enough.
United opened the scoring at the 28th minute through a brilliant effort by Toone. They would have scored seconds before if Garcia’s cross from the left after a brilliant run on the flank reached Parris. But after the cross was cleared, Toone won it back quickly, and showed a clean pair of heels before firing a left footed effort at the roof of the net.
Eight minutes later, Toone was the creator of a goal as United increased pressure with a rather complete domination of possession.
Toone’s cross from the left was delightful and it fell for Parris at the back post and the English forward made no mistake in beating Newcastle goalkeeper Grace Donnelly.
It did seem as if Parris had got another in stoppage time through a very good header but the Three Lions’ star was offside when she had received the delivery.
Parris did get a second of the game and it was a soft goal to concede for Newcastle.
Riviere’s lofted cross was dealt with poorly by Donnelly at the far post and it spilled right on Garcia’s feet. The Spaniard played in Parris, who was central and she had an easy tap-in into an open goal to score in. It was a well deserved goal for both United and Parris.
In the 71st minute, Rachel Williams grabbed her rather customary goal off the bench after combining with Toone upfront, her first effort after receiving a back pass hit the post but the rebound floated past Donnelly. Melvine Malard’s pass inside was perfect in the build up to the goal.
Zelem nearly got United’s fifth but her attempt from outside the box went over the bar.
Skinner’s side did turn it into a five star performance in stoppage time. Zelem picked Malard out perfectly from a corner and the French striker had the easy task of heading it in.
The win helped United put forth a statement of intent, as they progressed into the 5th round of the FA Cup. And for the side, it is a big result ahead of a vital tie against rivals Chelsea.