Lionesses shine as Man City hit Kazahkhstani outfit for six ahead of Real Madrid clash

·3-min read
Lionesses shine as Man City hit Kazahkhstani outfit for six ahead of Real Madrid clash - GETTY IMAGES
Lionesses shine as Man City hit Kazahkhstani outfit for six ahead of Real Madrid clash - GETTY IMAGES

Manchester City 6 Tomiris-Turan 0

Lauren Hemp got on the scoresheet and fellow Euro 2022-winning winger Chloe Kelly also impressed with an assist as the first six of this summer's triumphant Lionesses returned to competitive action in confident style in a routine victory for Manchester City over Kazakhstani outfit Tomiris-Turan.

The Women's Champions League first-round qualifier in Madrid saw Manchester City head coach Gareth Taylor start five of his team's Euros winners, 18 days since England's historic victory over Germany at Wembley.

As well as the lively Hemp and Kelly, midfielder Keira Walsh, defender Alex Greenwood and goalkeeper Ellie Roebuck were all in solid form too, while left-back Demi Stokes was introduced as a second-half substitute, in much more low-key surroundings at Real Madrid's training ground.

Man City's seventh member of this summer’s victorious 23-strong Lionesses squad, striker Ellen White, did not travel to Spain for personal reasons. In her absence, Jamaica striker Khadija Shaw headed in two well-taken first-half goals. The opener saw her angle in Hemp's cross from the left, before she turned in from Kelly's right-wing delivery.

That dynamic front three then combined for the third goal in first-half stoppage time, with Shaw feeding Hemp to slot in from close range, in a game the English side controlled from the start.

Head coach Gareth Taylor was impressed with all of his England players' contributions, adding: "They were the last of our players to return [to pre-season], and they would probably have liked to get away for a few days, but they’ve dealt with it really well."

Chloe Kelly was among the England stars in action for City - GETTY IMAGES
Chloe Kelly was among the England stars in action for City - GETTY IMAGES

City also gave debuts to four of their summer signings in their starting line-up. Spain centre-back Laia Aleixandri, who signed from Atletico Madrid, spread possession well and combined nicely with Holland right-back Kerstin Casparij, also 21, who arrived from FC Twente.

Spain left-back Leila Ouahabi also had a good workout following her move from Barcelona, while Australia's 19-year-old former Montpellier star Mary Fowler showed some good touches in midfield.

Walsh, who was awarded the player of the match accolade for July's Euros final, dictated the tempo on Thursday and nearly got on the scoresheet, drilling just wide in the second half.

The fourth goal came late on when Spanish midfielder Vicky Losada, on as a substitute, lashed home and in the 89th minute it was another City debutant, Deyna Castellanos of Venezuela, who fired in from the penalty spot for the fifth, and Azerbaijan goalkeeper Aitaj Sharifova's even-later own goal made it 6-0.

The result sets up a much-anticipated meeting with Real Madrid on Sunday. The Spanish club, who are ‘hosting’ this week’s qualifiers in this mini group of four teams in ‘League Path Group 4’, beat Austrian club Sturm Graz by the same scoreline. Los Blancos knocked the English club out of Europe in the second qualifying round last season.

Match details

Manchester City (4-3-3): Roebuck 6; Casparij 6, Aleixandri 7, Greenwood 7 (Houghton 6, 61), Ouahabi 6 (Stokes 6, 61); Fowler 6, Walsh 7, Coombs 7; Kelly 7 (Losada, 73), Shaw 8 (Castellanos, 67) Hemp 7 (Raso, 73)

Subs not used: MacIver (gk), Keating (gk), Angeldahl, Morgan, Kennedy, Blakstad

Tomiris-Turan (5-4-1): Sharifova 6; Kozhakhmet 5 (Yerzhanova, 62), Aitymova 5, Nurusheva 6, Popovic 5, A Sunday 6; Chilufya 7, Kubessova 6 (Mamyrova, 83), Esquivel Villanueva 6, Turlybekova 6 (Nizamutdinova, 62); J Sunday 6

Subs not used: Abibulla Kyzy (gk), Karatayeva, Kopzhanova, Berikova

Referee: Marina Zivkovic (Serbia)