Masked killer Ella Toone rediscovers Manchester United’s vanguard against Newcastle

Manchester United 5 Newcastle 0

Ella Toone was England’s super substitute during their Euro 2022 triumph, but her form since then has not always reached the same heights.

However, against third-tier Newcastle United in the fourth round of the Women’s FA Cup, Toone showed off her cutting edge while also sporting a new look: a protective mask she wore as a precaution after recently suffering a facial injury.

Manchester United manager Marc Skinner feels Toone has received undeserved criticism in recent months and praised the English midfielder’s application, character and skill after her spectacular first goal helped his team overcome Newcastle.

Toone curled a shot into the top left corner to break the deadlock after almost half an hour of stubborn resistance from a Newcastle team who looked more than capable of playing at Championship level. Last season’s finalists finally defeated the underdogs, when an in-form Nikita Parris scored twice (Toone provided the assist on the first) before substitutes Rachel Williams and Melvine Malard scored later.

“She got a lot of criticism that I thought she didn’t deserve, because everyone has high standards for her,” Skinner said of Toone. “She is like Manchester United, everyone always has high standards and if you don’t match them, there is a ‘crisis’.

“But what Ella has been doing very well is simplifying her game. When she applies pressure, she lets go, but she lets go with quality and she moves again. She has been a breath of fresh air. Her attitude towards her own development is back to the level she needs and it is just a good sign.”

Toone was wearing the mask to protect her nose after she was caught by an arm during a friendly against PSV in Malta during the Women’s Super League winter break in early January, but was left fit to play after successfully passing safety protocols. concussion this week. . But that didn’t seem to stop her and her joy at scoring the score was clear.

Ella Toone - Toone rediscovers Manchester United's vanguard against NewcastleElla Toone - Toone rediscovers Manchester United's vanguard against Newcastle

Ella Toone (right) was unstoppable for the first 45 minutes and almost all attacking moves went through the midfielder – Getty Images/Charlotte Tattersall

Skinner also feels Toone has benefited from the opportunity to recover over the winter break, after a busy year in which he was part of the Lionesses team that reached the World Cup final. “I think he was able to escape, he went on vacation with his family and that allowed him to cool off,” he said. “Tooney will tell you that he wants to play every minute of every game forever, but the reality is that humans often don’t know what’s best for them. It’s also a pleasure to manage someone who wants to play every second. She loves soccer. If she doesn’t play, she will see it, she will be in the Manchester United men’s games if she doesn’t play in the women’s Manchester United.”

Skinner also praised Newcastle, adding: “It was a really good game. Thanks to Newcastle, I don’t think it will be long before they are in the WSL, not really. They fell towards the end because of the way we played, but they were very involved in the game.”

Newcastle coach Becky Langley felt her team gave a “good account of ourselves” and felt the strong, first-choice team their top-class opponents named showed how much her team is respected, saying: “When I saw the team sheet I was speechless. surprised but not surprised. It was a joy for us to see them play with their full team, a great compliment.

“Having 1,000 of our fans come out to support us is incredible. Those memories will stay with the players forever. To be honest, it brought tears to my eyes when I woke up and saw the pictures of everyone in St James’ Park at 6.30 in the morning, to see so many people.”

Langley’s Newcastle team are five points clear at the top of the Northern Premier Division, have played one more game than second-placed Burnley and are aiming to reach the WSL in the future. While Langley saw positive signs on Sunday, he also knows there is a long way to go, adding: “It’s obviously the physical parts where the Manchester United players have had a lot more exposure and experience with strength and conditioning programs.” as full-time athletes. We are only six months into our full-time program at the third level. “Now it’s about making sure we win our league this season and get back-to-back promotions.”

Match details

Manchester United (4-2-3-1): Ears 6; Rivière 6 (Evans 6, 72), Le Tissier 7, Turner 6, Blundell 6; Ladd 6 (Warrior 7, 65), Zelem 6; Geyse 7 (Williams 7, 66), Toone 8, Garcia 6 (Galton 7, 65); Parris 8 (Anabo 7, 65)
Goals: Toone 28, Parris 37, 55, Williams 71, Malard 90+1
Unused subs: Tullis-Joyce (gk)
Newcastle United (4-3-3): Donnell 6; Stobbs 6, Potts 6, Greenwood 6 (Burt 6, 87), Watt 6; Gibson 5 (Bedeau 6, 59), Boddy 6, Kelly 5; Dodds 5 (Elson 5, 59), Galloway 5 (Soulsby 6, 75), Barker 5 (McQuade 5, 75)
Unused subs: Milne-Redhead, Wilkinson, Boyes, Reid (gk)
Referee: Megan Wilson
Attendance: 4,731

Summary: Champion Chelsea overcomes West Ham’s tough test

Women’s FA Cup champions Chelsea needed extra time to beat West Ham United in the fourth round on a day with no big surprise results in the competition.

Emma Hayes’ side, bidding to win the cup for a fourth consecutive season, fell behind when France’s Viviane Asseyi gave top-flight West Ham an early lead at Kingsmeadow, but Chelsea, adjusting to the absence of star striker Sam Kerr continued his ACL injury and was without the injured English centre-back Millie Bright, who recovered to dominate the rest of the match.

American forward Mia Fishel equalized before goals from Erin Cuthbert and Sjoeke Nusken won the tie 3-1 in the extra 30 minutes.

Arsenal, a record 14-time winner, gave American full-back Emily Fox her debut and comfortably beat Watford 5-1. The other good news for Arsenal fans is that England striker Beth Mead is understood to be unharmed, as she appeared to suffer an injury later on.

Manchester City won 4-0 at the sold-out Maiden Castle ground in Durham, on a Sunday in which no Women’s Super League team was eliminated by lower league rivals.

The team that came closest to being hurt was Tottenham, who were trailing 2-0 at home to Sheffield United, but a brace from striker Bethany England and then Rosella Ayane’s 96th-minute winner ruined the score. . The hopes of the South Yorkshire club.

The biggest and only surprise of the day came from third division Wolves, who came from behind to achieve a memorable 2-1 away victory against second division Reading, thanks to a late goal from Destiney Toussaint. There was £54,000 in prize money for each of the winning teams after the prize pool doubled from last year.

The lowest-ranked team left in the competition, fifth-tier Luton Town, were beaten 6-0 by first-tier Brighton, while fourth-tier Hampshire club Moneyfields lost 4-0 away. against the London City Lionesses of the second division. Birmingham City, winners of the 2012 cup and current championship leaders, needed extra time to overcome third-division Burnley.

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