Manchester United women’s manager Casey Stoney was pleased with her side’s 0-1 victory against Liverpool, but the former England defender has suggested that her side can perform better. The game marked the team’s first competitive fixture since United reformed the women’s club earlier this year after a 13-year absence, and the deadlock wasn’t broken until late on, with Lizzie Arnot diverting in captain Alex Greenwood’s excellent cross after Stoney’s side had passed up several chances to put themselves ahead.
“I’m really pleased with the three points but at the same time we know we can play better,” said Stoney after the game.
“These girls have put an absolute shift in for six weeks after being thrown together. To go out there and dig deep, to show a bit of character was really pleasing.
“When it was backs against the wall, we stayed calm. We created some really good opportunities, we just need to finish them. It was a great ball in from Alex and when you get numbers in the box you’ll get goals.”
“They stuck together,” Stoney then told BBC Radio 5 live. “For a team that has only been together for six weeks they weathered the storm quite well.
“I recruited from the second tier, they’ve stepped up and shown they are more than capable of playing a level above that.
“There’s no pressure from the club to get promotion but these players want to be playing in the top flight. They’re history makers now.”
The scenes that followed Arnot’s winner suggested that victory meant a huge amount to the team that Stoney has assembled. Whilst the manager’s assertion that there are no set expectations from United’s board that she delivers promotion in her first full season, taking a side of Liverpool’s calibre on, let alone beating them, suggests that United could deliver a truly special season.