Izzy Christiansen hails Man City spirit after gritty victory

Thursday 04 Aug 2016
Isobel Christiansen, right, is challenged by Rachel Rowe
Isobel Christiansen was proud of Manchester City’s gritty performance as they extended their lead at the top of the FA Women’s Super League 1 with a hard-fought 2-1 win over Reading.

The FAWSL 1 league-leaders looked comfortable for large periods of the game, but were wasteful at times, struggling to capitalise on a string of early chances and eventually had Christiansen and Toni Duggan to thank for two clinical finishes.

Reading 1-2 Manchester City

FA Women’s Super League 1
Adams Park
Wednesday 3 August

On the 38th minute Nikita Parris pulled back a cross to leave Christiansen – making her 50th appearance for the club – with a free ball on the edge of the six-yard box, which she calmly headed home.

And goal-scorer Christiansen said she her side were just happy to bag the win as they prepare for their Continental Tyres Cup quarter-final with Doncaster Rovers Belles on Sunday.

“It’s a very tough place to come with a great atmosphere, we are pleased to be coming away with the three points. A goal on my 50th appearance is a little landmark, but most importantly we won,” she said. 

“Parris has been fantastic down the right hand side and just timed my run and she’s put a perfect ball in and all I had to do was head it into the net.

“There are obviously lessons to be learnt from today, but most importantly at this stage of the season is the points.

“We’re feeling good. We’ve got a big squad with loads of fresh legs. Most importantly we’re all fit, and everyone’s in good shape”

Jade Boho-Sayo looked isolated up front for Reading, and the team wasted several chances on the counter as City dominated possession.

Despite Reading really failing to produce any clear-cut chances in the second-half, City did not stamp their authority on the game.

That was until the 80th minute, when Reading failed to clear a corner, and substitute Duggan thumped home first-time from the edge of the box into the top corner.

There was still time for Reading to grab a consolation goal as Parris clipped Emma Folis in the area, and Lauren Bruton dispatched the spot-kick into the bottom left-hand corner.

Despite the loss Bruton shone for Reading and she was proud of the way her side performed against City, who moved seven points clear at the top of FAWSL 1.

And with her team up against City again at the Academy Stadium in their next FAWSL 1 fixture, she found plenty of cause for optimism.

“I thought we did exceptionally well. We kept them at bay for a good while. We stopped them playing through us, which was our game plan, and we frustrated them,” she explained.

“When we did get the ball we broke on the counter and we did have chances, especially in the first half.

“They've got the quality to break us down, so when they have so many chances they're going to score at some point.

“We frustrated them tonight and were unlucky to come out with no points.”

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Reading: Mary Earps, Rebecca Jane, Kayleigh Hines, Kirsty McGee (c), Emma Folis, Remi Allen, Lauren Bruton, Lois Roche, Jade Boho-Sayo, Sophie Perry, Rachel Rowe

Substitutes: Laura-May Walkley for Lois Roche 64, Melissa Fletcher for Remi Allen 82

Substitutes not used: Molly Bartrip, Laura-May Walkley, Amber Stobbs, Helen Ward, Nia Jones, Chloe Sansom.

Goals: Bruton 89pen.

Manchester City: Karen Bardsley, Lucy Bronze, Demi Stokes, Tessel Middag, Jennifer Beattie, Steph Houghton (c), Jill Scott, Isobel Christiansen, Georgia Stanway, Jane Ross, Nikita Parris.

Substitutes: Keira Walsh for Tessel Middag 61, Toni Duggan for Georgia Stanway 74, Daphne Corboz for Jill Scott 82.

Substitutes not used: Ella Toone, Marie Marie Hourihan.

Goals: Christiansen 38, Duggan 80.

Referee: David Rock.

Attendance: 592.

By FA Staff