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Preview: Birmingham City Women vs. Manchester United Women - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Women's Super League clash between Birmingham City Women and Manchester United Women, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Manchester United Women are looking to bounce back from their first Women's Super League defeat of the season when they travel to St Andrew's, where they will face Birmingham City Women on Sunday.

Birmingham are still in search of their first win of the campaign after losing their opening three matches, making them early candidates to be relegated this year.


Match preview

Manchester United's Ona Batlle celebrates scoring their second goal against Reading in the Women's Super League on September 3, 2021© Reuters

Scott Booth's team did score their first goal of the campaign last time out in the WSL, which came from new signing Jade Pennock, but her side still lost out to Everton in that game, eventually being beaten 3-1.

Birmingham also suffered disappointment in the FA Cup quarter-finals on Wednesday evening, when they welcomed Chelsea to the West Midlands and the away side progressed into the last four with relative ease.

Second-half goals from Samantha Kerr, Pernille Harder and a double from Fran Kirby meant that Birmingham crashed out of the competition, but they will need their full focus on the WSL considering their position at the foot of the table.

The five goals which they conceded against Brighton & Hove Albion damaged the Blues' goal difference, meaning that they are below the other two teams, Reading and Leicester, who are also winless.

Manchester United need to bounce back from a heavy defeat last weekend, when the reigning champions Chelsea ran riot at Leigh Sports Village, going back to London with a 6-1 win under their belt.

The home side did not help themselves in that game, causing problems for themselves straight from kickoff, and Kirby punished them just two minutes into that game, which was the beginning of a bad day at the office for Man United.

Marc Skinner's side have aspirations to lift the WSL trophy in May, but their hopes of claiming top spot this season will have been damaged by that defeat, and the team's reaction this weekend will place down a strong indication of how serious Man United's goals are.

One sign of a title-winning team is how they bounce back from disappointment, and Man United will see this game against a winless Birmingham as a good opportunity to get back on track.

Man United will want to emulate their result from the last time they travelled to face Birmingham at the start of last season, when they went away with a 5-2 win. However, Skinner will also be keen for his side to keep a clean sheet this weekend after conceding six on Sunday.

Birmingham City Women Women's Super League form:
  • L
  • L
  • L

Birmingham City Women form (all competitions):
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L

Manchester United Women Women's Super League form:
  • W
  • W
  • L



Team News

Birmingham's Pennock will be pleased to have scored her first and the team's first goal of the season last week, but she will be hoping that she can add to her tally and earn something out of the game with her contribution.

The midfield trio of Lucy Quinn, Lisa Robertson and Jamie Finn has started the last two WSL games for Birmingham, and they are all expected to keep their place in the starting 11 with Quinn and Robertson in particular bringing a lot of experience to the Blues' side.

Goalkeeper Emily Ramsey is on loan at Birmingham from Manchester United so she will be ineligible for selection this weekend, giving an opportunity for Marie Hourihan to start between the posts.

Manchester United centre-back Millie Turner was forced off after 15 minutes against Leicester and she was replaced in the starting lineup by Maria Thorisdottir last time out.

The Red Devils pose a big attacking threat with a front four including Leah Galton, Lucy Staniforth, Kirsty Hanson and Ella Toone, who are all expected to start this weekend.

Mary Earps will be hoping to bounce back after conceding six goals last Sunday, and she will want to add to her single clean sheet which she earned on the opening day.

Birmingham City Women possible starting lineup:
Hourihan; Holloway, Lawley, Louise Quinn, Scott; Lucy Quinn, Robertson, Finn; Sarri, Ewens, Pennock

Manchester United Women possible starting lineup:
Earps; Batlle, Thorisdottir, Mannion, Blundell; Groenen, Zelem; Galton, Staniforth, Hanson; Toone


SM words green background

We say: Birmingham City Women 0-3 Manchester United Women

Manchester United are likely to come flying out of the traps on Sunday to prove a point after their heavy defeat last weekend, and their quality should shine through and earn them three points at St Andrew's.

Birmingham have not shown enough to suggest that they are going to pull away from a relegation battle this season, and they could struggle to create anything against a Man United team which is expected to be much-improved from last Sunday.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data


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How you voted: B'ham Women vs Man Utd Women

Birmingham City Women
14.3%
Draw
14.3%
Manchester United Women
71.4%
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Chelsea's Fran Kirby pictured in August 2020
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