Women's Football

Everton 1-1 Man Utd: Player ratings as controversial equaliser earns Toffees a point

Jamie Spencer
Everton vs Man Utd ended all square in the WSL
Everton vs Man Utd ended all square in the WSL / Lewis Storey/GettyImages

Manchester United were pegged back for the second week in a row as they drew 1-1 with Everton at Walton Hall Park, in a contest that can best be described as a game of two halves.

United were well worth a 1-0 half-time lead, having gone ahead through Ella Toone. But substitute Simone Magill got Everton back level with a deserved, if slightly controversial, equaliser with just over 10 minutes left to play.

A dominant United completely controlled the first half. That was underlined in the early stages when Toone’s precision finish hit the back of the net. Alessia Russo, who has been in fine form lately, created the breakaway goal with her driving run, before Martha Thomas played the final pass.

Everton generally lacked cohesion in their play throughout the opening 45 minutes and were off the pace in a defensive capacity, perhaps symptomatic of a new manager yet to put his stamp on the squad. At that stage, only really Kenza Dali and Claire Emslie posed any sort of threat.

But the Toffees did grow into the game much more after half-time, while United shrank.

Everton saw more of the ball in a spell of pressure and, even though clear chances were still lacking, their opponents looked increasingly nervous. United, having conceded a late equaliser against Tottenham a week ago, were made to pay again.

The equalising goal was contentious to say the least. United defender Maria Thorisdottir was hesitant as she tried to shield the ball back to Mary Earps, but just as the goalkeeper thought she had both hands on the ball Magill poked a boot through to roll it into the net.

There was still time for United to threaten again, but Toone’s fierce effort was spectacularly saved by Everton goalkeeper Sandy MacIver, securing a point for her side.

Here is how both sets of players rated...

Everton player ratings

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

Sandy MacIver (GK) - 6/10 - Didn't actually have masses to do until a flying save late on helped secure her team a point.

Leonie Maier (RB) - 7/10 - Handled the threat of Galton very well.

Rikke Sevecke (CB) - 6/10 - Forced to take a cynical yellow card in the second half to stop a potentially dangerous counter attack.

Gabrielle George (CB) - 6/10 - Backed away too much when United scored but stood up stronger after that.

Danielle Turner (LB) - 6/10 - Combative and gritty as expected.

2. Midfielders

Lucy Graham (RM) - 6/10 - First WSL start of the season. Will have been pleased to get some important minutes under her belt.

Kenza Dali (CM) - 7/10 - Gave Everton some creative guile and looked the most likely in blue to unlock the visitors' defence. Appeared frustrated with her teammates at times.

Izzy Christiansen (CM) - 5/10 - Weak pressure in midfield when United got the early breakthrough. Often looked isolated as a sole shielding player.

Claire Emslie (LM) - 7/10 - Provided Everton with a welcome outlet. Had a couple of long range efforts and clipped the bar with one of them.

3. Forwards

Valerie Gauvin (ST) - 5/10 - Miscued a glorious chance towards the end of the first half. Limited overall and withdrawn with more than 20 minutes left.

Toni Duggan (ST) - 5/10 - Not much meaningful service but didn't make enough of an impact off her own back either. The wait for a goal goes on.

4. Substitutes

Simone Magill (LM) - 7/10 - Got Everton back into the game with the equaliser, capitalising on hesitancy among the United defenders.

Grace Clinton (RM) - 6/10 - Gained more invaluable experience.

Hanna Bennison (CM) - 6/10 - Shielded the back four when Everton were in the ascendancy.

Man Utd player ratings

5. Goalkeeper & defenders

Mary Earps (GK) - 6/10 - Felt hard done by when Everton scored because it looked like she had two hands on the ball.

Ona Batlle (RB) - 6/10 - Got forward at every opportunity.

Aoife Mannion (CB) - 6/10 - Disappointed she didn't score in the first half.

Maria Thorisdottir (CB) - 5/10 - The equalising goal was controversial but she should have dealt with the situation before it got to that point.

Hannah Blundell (LB) - 6/10 - Like Batlle, her first thought on the ball was always to look forward. Always a threat.

6. Midfielders

Katie Zelem (CM) - 5/10 - Controlled the first half. Looked off the pace later in the game as Everton grew in confidence.

Vilde Boe Risa (CM) - 5/10 - Lasted just over an hour on her return.

Ella Toone (AM) - 7/10 - The recently crowned Vertu Motors PFA Fans' Player of the Month continued her good form with an outstanding finish. Found pockets of space all afternoon to give Everton problems.

7. Forwards

Alessia Russo (RW) - 7/10 - Created the opening goal with her driving ball carry and measured through ball.

Martha Thomas (ST) - 6/10 - Led the line well in the first half on her return to the starting XI. Came away with an assist but faded after the break.

Leah Galton (LW) - 5/10 - Unusually quiet by her own high standards.

8. Substitutes

Lucy Staniforth (CM) - 5/10 - Struggled to shift the balance back in favour of her team.

Kirsty Hanson (RW) - 6/10 - Provided an injection of energy off the bench.

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