Joe Montemurro Reacts to Chelsea Defeat


Arsenal’s title aspirations took a huge blow with a 4-1 home defeat to Chelsea at Meadow Park on Sunday. Tim Stillman caught up with a despondent Joe Montemurro after the game for Arseblog News.

On the setup today…
The thought was to press a little bit higher up the pitch and to stop them playing through the middle and create overloads in the middle of the park, it didn’t work and I take full responsibility.

On whether the failings were tactical or mental…
It was tactical today.

On the potential transfer of Caitlin Foord…
We are negotiating with Caitlin, hopefully things will be done quickly now, but I don’t want to speculate yet on things that aren’t done.

On the decision to leave Lisa Evans on the bench…
We decided not to play with a lot of width and instead go for inside to outside movement and it didn’t work.

On the defending for the Chelsea goals…
It’s difficult to sit back and watch a team so powerful putting us under a lot of pressure and creating chances, but the most disappointing thing was that we couldn’t get the ball down and play. We couldn’t string passes together and that’s the first time I’ve seen that in my two-and-a-bit years here.

On the preparation for the game…
I can’t say we prepared correctly, the plan didn’t work and I have to take responsibility for that.

On bouncing back from defeat…
This is an amazing team with an amazing bunch of players, they’re allowed a slip-up every once in a while they are allowed to make mistakes, historically this team has always bounced back and responded well to disappointment.

On creating more chances in the second half…
We exposed them a bit more, but at 3 or 4-0 it’s not the same, Chelsea are just looking to see the game out, so it’s a little bit false to say we created more chances.

On a 4,000 sellout crowd at Meadow Park…
That’s great and the game is coming on in leaps and bounds and we’re happy to see so many people here today and we hope to see it again.

On what kind of influence the result will have on the title race…
I don’t know, it’s difficult to say. There’s a lot of football to play and we can’t predict the future.

On picking the players up…
We review, we look at what went wrong and we get the energy levels up and we get the frame of mind right and we keep going. This team is resilient and won’t give up. It’s a setback, probably the biggest we’ve had since I’ve been here.

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canon fodder

It’s not just the result that is devastating but also the adverse negative effect it will have on us. We were truly spanked and I do fear for the rest of the season. We have to beat Man City and hope that Chelsea slip up. I don’t see Chelsea slipping up though!


We don’t know the effect it will have yet I believe In Joe and the team that they’ll do everything in their power to right the wrongs that happened today but unfortunately it might not be in our hands anymore


Hoping the opposite result for the men’s team on Stamford bridge this week.


What was up with that Freaking Horn….that thing needs shoved deeply up the users Bung Hole


God, this game was annoying. We got the tactics from beginning SO wrong and we were punished for it instantly. With hindsight it is so difficult to understand why Joe decided to complicate our game so much. And it is so hard to see in what universe that game plan could have worked. After getting Sam Kerr Chelsea’s tactics will always be the same – straight 4-4-2, pressing from the front and trying to open up the teams from wide or over. They didn’t want to play through middle, ball to Ji and from where over the top or to… Read more »


What is the problem with playing against Chelsea? I have watched every game for the last four years and apart from one game against Chelsea at their place when the girls played their normal game and beat Chelsea by five goals, every time they play Chelsea they look a totally different team. In fact I’d go so far as to say they look beat before they even start. Today was no different 4-1 to Chelsea, the team do very well against every other team in the league but something has got to change if we are to win the WSL… Read more »


its the same with the men’s team.

Peter Story Teller

Watch the replay and you will see how they beat us everytime. Most teams give our mid-field time on the ball to pick a pass but Chelsea hunt the ball player in packs. As soon as Lia or Kim received the ball there were 3 Chelsea players around them so no matter which way they turned they could not release the ball and it was turned over. Chelsea are a very physical team and are the only ones in the WSL at the moment who are able to do this for very long which is why a majority of our… Read more »


I saw Chelsea give Lyon all they could handle in the Champions League last year, and that was obviously before they added Kerr. They are a good team, and physical. If their pressure is turning you over, you either have to play the ball more quickly or start playing more direct. Shocked that Mead didn’t start today–coach tried to be too cute and it backfired.


Peter, I accept what you say in reference to todays game, but as I said this getting beat by Chelsea has been the norm over the past four years. With the class of manager we have had during that period I would have expected us to win a reasonable amount of games against Chelsea not just one! I firmly believe that Joe M is an exceptional manager and that we have a darn good side, and yet come any match day against Chelsea I just don’t recognise the Arsenal team that’s playing in front of me.


Chelsea plan-
Choke the midfield;
Recover ball, and move it quickly to the wings(vacated by us);
Put in high quick cross in for headers.

It worked. Joe sees his shortcoming in the preparations. But we’ll bounce back.

Paul Roberts

This is not fucking acceptable! Arsenal Women nicking a living! 🙂


I know you’re kidding!

The Arsenal

Stop coming into contact with the men’s team.

Tony Hall

Gutted for the ladies, I am sure they will bounce back quickly. However now the title is out of our hands we have to make sure we win our remaining games, get that goal difference up and hope Chelsea drop 2 points. If they it would have them level with us and it may well come down to goal difference at the end of the season. Even better if they lose a game but they don’t look like losing any more than Liverpool men’s team do at the moment and we don’t want either team going a season unbeaten!


Yeah Joe got this one wrong and he knows it. I think he just overthought it and played a system that was too unfamiliar for the players. Chelsea don’t give you 30 minutes to find your feet while you get to grips with a new system. Chelsea play City on Feb 23rd. If we beat City and those 2 draw it looks better, but that’s a big ask. Chelsea’s style and Arsenal’s style means Chelsea have the upper hand head to head, but Arsenal just never look like dropping points against the teams below 3rd. Arsenal play possession and Chelsea… Read more »

Peter Story Teller

I think Citeh could fade as their manager leaves immediately after our game against them but unfortunately that means Chelsea get to play them just after the manager is gone. However, I think Chloe Kelly can do us a favour for all the years we looked after her by banging in another hat-trick vs big mouth Emma’s lot and despite their routine dominance over our girls Chelsea have still got plenty of opportunity to drop a few points along the way to the lower ranked teams. Their advantage of course is no European football to worry about this season but… Read more »

Peter Story Teller

The positive from yesterday was how lively Meado looked when she came on.

Christopher Humphrey

Joe big enough to say he got it wrong. Any news on Jordan?


It was tactical loss. We were prepairing for Chelsea from the LAST game – in wich we lost battle in middlefield (4 Chelsea players vs 3 Arsenal players). But Chelsea were waiting exactly for this reaction. They just gave us the center of the field – and used width. 2-0 to Chelsea coach. Still 2 games are not equal to the whole season. Our style is much more effective.