Everton 1-2 Man City – WSL: Player ratings as Shaw inspired City’s fifth successive win

Manchester City secured five straight wins in the Women’s Football League by defeating Everton at Walton Hall Park on Saturday afternoon, pressing Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal ahead of them.

Khadija Shaw continued her excellent start to the season with a crucial goal for City early in the second half, after Everton defender Ricky Seviki had canceled out Julie Plakstad’s opener.

Emily Ramsey made a stunning save in just 25 seconds of play. Everton goalkeeper Chloe Kelly, on loan from Manchester United, was denied a certain goal from close range at the far post after fine work down the left from Laura Coombes and Shaw.

City dominated, especially on the left wing. But there was a weakness when Yui Hasegawa was caught twice early on. One of those led Aurora Galli to whistle the ball just past the post for Everton’s first meaningful attack.

The tightest offside calls were determined by a potential opener from Shaw, while Blakstad probably should have been better at acres of space when cutting in from the left. But Everton had certainly grown into the game by the time City broke the deadlock after half an hour.

Blakstad’s goal was a clinical run of the visitors. Shaw beat the offside trap trying to catch a through ball from Laila Wahabi, opting to square Blakstad on the right for an easy finish.

City had hoped to then pull away but were held back by a set piece in the closing stages of the first half when they failed to clear a corner and Sevecke fired the ball in from close range.

But the Civic had a huge problem with Shaw in reverse. They lost the City star several times in the first half and were again haunting the shadows immediately after half-time when Shaw drove the car into the Everton defense – with the resulting low shot well saved by Ramsey.

The city returned to the front soon after. Galey gave it away cheaply on the edge of the Everton penalty area, prompting Combs to try her luck. That guesswork shot hit the post, but Shaw reacted faster than the defenders around it to spin on the rebound.

Everton again tried to fight back as they did after losing 1-0. But, somehow, City didn’t score the third goal in a bizarre scrimmage on the hour. First, Sevecke cleared one of them off the line, before Ramsey got away with a roar as I dropped the ball against the post. Kelly’s acrobatic attempt sent the ball backwards towards goal, with Blackstad hitting the crossbar from a yard out.

First-half substitute Aggie Beaver-Jones was a really positive influence on Everton and probably thought they could have had a better chance of equalizing, shooting into the side-netting.

As the game continued into the final stages, City were generally in control and created more chances that could have increased their lead. However, the Everton warning signs continued until the end and El Wahabi graced the cover excellently for a chance at hero Gio Queiroz. Toffees captain Lucy Graham should have done better when she missed the target attempting a corner kick.

Ricky Civic has returned Everton to its ranks

Ricky Civic brought Everton back to him/Nathan Sterk/Getty Images

GK: Emily Ramsey – 7/10 – He made great saves first and two more good stops in the second half. Little chance stood with the targets entered.

Centre-back: Megan Finnegan – 6/10 – Well covered on the right, especially considering that this is where City look most dangerous.

CB: Ricky Civic – 6/10 – It was a real rollercoaster. He looked a narrow second to Shaw, especially when trying to play an offside attacker. But she scored a goal herself and kept someone off the line.

Center back: Gabe George – 7/10 – He has played deeper after impressing at full-back lately. It still annoys her as she goes, especially on the corner from which the Toffees equalized.

RM: Lucy Graham (CM) – 6/10 – He had to do a lot of defending and leading by example. He missed the goal with a good chance late on.

CM: Natalie Bjorn – 6/10 – He provided decent defensive protection, but was booked in the first half. Somewhat limited on the ball.

CM: Aurora Galli – 5/10 – Good in flashes when she was able to slot the ball in and drive forward. He donated it cheaply before City regained the top spot.

Left midfielder: Elise Stenvik – 6/10 – Provided the corner for Everton to equalise. Not as effective in open play.

RF: Katya Snowies – 5/10 – He always had a hard time.

Striker: Karen Holmgard – 5/10 – She worked hard but struggled to impress.

Left back: Hanna Bennison – 4/10 – Disappointingly anonymous.

SUB: Aggie Beever-Jones (46 min for Holmgaard) – 8/10

SUB: Gio Queiroz (66 min to Benison) – 6/10

SUB: Claire Wheeler (66 minutes for Galli) – 6/10

SUB: Leonie Meyer (76 min to Steenwijk) – 6/10

Director: Brian Sorensen – 7/10 – Bringing in Beever-Jones was a positive move that had an impact. He will be disappointed about his team’s role in the decisive City goal.

Khadija Shaw

Khadija Shaw scores again for Man City/Nathan Sterk/Getty Images

GK: Sandy McIver – 5/10 – She didn’t shy away from glory against her former club, especially when Everton equalized from a corner kick within their reach. A few fleeting moments in general.

Right-back: Christine Casparig – 6/10 – A strong defensive performance made it difficult for Everton to do much on the left.

Center back: Laia Alexandri – 7/10 – She positioned herself well and always looked ready for danger when Everton took the lead in open play.

CB: Esme Morgan (C) – 6/10 – Not the most powerful as there have been a few occasions when Everton have threatened to overrule it. He barely gave the ball away on possession.

Left back: Laila Al-Wahabi – 8/10 – He attacked deliberately and scored a great goal with a defensive split pass. A late defensive tackle denied Everton a late equaliser.

Midfielder: Yui Hasegawa – 6/10 – The ball was caught more than once early. It gets better after that and is generally neat and tidy.

CM: Deyna Castellanos – 6/10 – Show an agile footprint in tight spaces. Good chance deflected in the cross at 1-1.

CM: Laura Coombs – 7/10 – He associated well with Blakstad early on. Her shot against the post led to the second goal.

RW: Chloe Kelly – 7/10 – Score a goal almost within 30 seconds and have been involved in some good City moments throughout.

Striker: Khadija Shaw – 9/10 – Its movement, speed, and strength were instantly threatening. A goal was disallowed but he assisted on the opener, then scored City’s second and had other chances.

Left-back: Julie Blackstad – 8/10 – She alternated between wings and was effective on both sides. He was easily converted and was always a threat.

SUB: Mary Fowler (82′ for Coombs) – N/A

Director: Gareth Taylor – 7/10 – He didn’t feel the need to mess with his team for most of this match. Rewarded for choosing his original team.

Man of the match – Khadija Shaw (Man City)

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