Skinner: We can go toe-to-toe with City

Thursday 21 March 2024 09:56

Marc Skinner is ready for his Manchester United Women side to go toe-to-toe with City in the derby game this weekend.

The Reds make the short trip to the Etihad Stadium for the Women’s Super League match as we look to put the performance at Old Trafford, in the reverse fixture, behind us.

Earlier in the season, United fell to a 3-1 defeat to City in front of a record crowd at the Theatre of Dreams but will be out to avenge that loss.

Ahead of the game, Skinner spoke to the press about our opponents, playing in the big stadiums and United’s performances so far this term. 

Press conference: Manchester City v United Women Video

Press conference: Manchester City v United Women

Press conference | Marc Skinner is in determined mood as he previews Saturday's WSL Manchester derby...


“When we played at Old Trafford, of course it's fantastic to play in front of our fans but it's one of those that the the opponent can use that energy against you. We’ve got to try to neutralise the fans and neutralise the energy in the stadium and turn it towards our favour. There's no doubt the Manchester United fans in that pocket, where they get, will be as loud as they possibly can be, so we've got to put it in a place and we've got to put the game in a place.

“Knowing how difficult it is to play against Manchester City, we've got to try to turn the crowd into like a quiet stadium. It’s difficult to do against a very, very good team. We know that but that's what we've got to be prepared to do. And I think the players are preparing for that.”


“We've got to chase and that's what we're here to do. We've got to put ourselves in a position to do that. We've got to go to the Etihad, a very difficult place, against a very difficult team, but we've got to try to win the game of football.

"We've got to use all of the derby tension, all of those factors, but we've got to get to a place where we can try to win the game. Not many teams do it and that's what we've got to break. We've done it before and that's what we're aiming to do again.”

Hinata Miyazawa is stepping up her recovery


“I absolutely believe that, if you saw our recent Continental Cup game [against Manchester City], we shouldn't have lost the game. I thought it was a fantastic performance from us. There are loads of factors that are different to a normal game in a derby, but it's part and parcel of what makes it exciting. I absolutely, wholeheartedly believe in my team to be able to go toe-to-toe with Manchester City. But I also pay respect because I'm a respectful coach.

“Manchester City have got so many results this year, as well. They're in a good form themselves. I know that they've lost the games against Chelsea and so on, in the cup against Tottenham. But, in those games, they were good as well. So you know you've got to to have a bit of luck. But also we've got to be at the very best of our performance. If we do that, I have no doubt we can beat any team. So the reality is we've got to put ourselves in that elite performance on the game day. And if we do that, I'll believe in us to be able to win the game."

Leah Galton will miss the Manchester derby.


“Everyone barring Leah [Galton] and, obviously, the longer term injuries are available. Hini [Hinata Miyazawa] is back on the grass, which is fantastic. Hopefully, she will be back, maybe some time in the next few weeks if we can. Hopefully, Leah's back [soon] as well.”


Make sure you come down to Leigh Sports Village on 31 March, 14 April and 21 April, and Old Trafford on 18 May, to support United Women in our remaining home games this season:

Sun 31 Mar: Everton (12:00 BST)
Sun 14 Apr: Chelsea, FA Cup semi-final (14:35 BST)

Sun 21 Apr: Tottenham (12:00 BST)*
Sun 18 May: Chelsea (15:00 BST)**

*Time and date TBC
**This game is being played at Old Trafford

You can buy tickets for every United Women's home game here.