Joe Montemurro Reacts to Victory Over Birmingham City

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Arsenal Women maintained their perch at the top of the WSL with a 2-0 win over Birmingham City on Sunday afternoon. Tim Stillman caught up with manager Joe Montemurro after the game exclusively for Arsebog News.

On the performance…
I probably expected that we would be lacking a bit of rhythm and a little slow, when you haven’t played for three weeks you expect that. But all in all it was a professional performance and e got the job done.

On missing chances to score more goals today…
We train to get the ball to a certain point on the pitch and then it’s down to the execution to put the ball in the net, we had a lot of practice at missing chances today!

On what he said to Jordan Nobbs just before she scored her goal…
We lowered our wingers to pull their full backs out knowing that Jordan can attack that space and lo and behold that’s what happened.

On the increasing importance of Viki Schnaderbeck…
We’re blessed with centre-backs that can pick passes and start the play, that can organise according to when we need to go forward and when to prepare the passes and Viki is very good at this.

We felt in the first half that she was passing to Katie McCabe at left-back too early and she was getting pressed, so we asked her to drive in a little bit more to eliminate the first line of pressure so we could progress and we did that in the second half.

On Emma Mitchell’s loan move to Spurs…
She’s still our player, we just felt with the pecking order of the left-back position she wasn’t going to play much and Emma needs to play. She’s been unfortunate with injury problems, illness and other fitness concerns. We decided it was better for her to go somewhere and get games, she needs to play.

On Katrine Veje and Jen Beattie’s fitness…
They’re not far off, we’re in a position where we can take precautions. Beth was ready to play today too, but was still a bit tender with the knock that she got at Everton, so we decided to give her another week. Same with Jen and Katrine, so we’re in a good position for the second half of the season.

On January transfer window plans…
Watch this space!

On a year unbeaten at Meadow Park…
We love playing in front of our fans and entertaining them, we love playing here, we know the scale and we know the pitch well and it suits our style, this is our home.

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canon fodder

I was a bit disappointed at first with the score line as Birmingham have not be great lately; then I was reminded of the three week break and so a bit of rustiness is to expected. If we can remain unbeaten against Man City and Chelsea we should have the league in the bag, as it were.

Christopher Humphrey

A good solid performance today. A bit like the Liverpool game in the second half. Lots of “almosts” . Credit to Brum they worked hard and did carry some attacking intent.

Upamecano but downalego

I know it’s early days in regards to men appreciating women’s football in large numbers, but as a fan myself, I’d love to see the ladies’ team get ‘Player Rating’ articles after games on here, Blogs, maybe even the occasional ’By The Numbers’ or after especially big games. Obviously I don’t expect you to do it just because one reader asked, I’m just hoping it gets a few others to make the same request.

Upamecano but downalego

That’s great, Tim, thank you for taking the time to respond. I’m glad to know there’s even more to come! I really enjoyed the half-term review by the way. I understand some are a little worried about a slight toxic nature in Player Ratings’ comments if results are poor, but I think, at present at least, the fans that tune into the Ladies’ games are far more enthusiastic. And on the whole, footballers are paid entertainers as well as sports people, regardless of gender, the vast majority here would offer polite critiquing over needless abuse, especially given the teams’ continued… Read more »

Fun Gunner

I’m not a fan of player ratings. It’s a step down the route of ragging on certain players, IMO.

Stillberto

Personally I’m not a fan of them at all- but that’s not a reason not to do them if people want. The thing that gives me most pause for thought is that I get on well with some of the players which might make it difficult to be entirely objective! I know some of the players and some of the players’ families read these pieces! ???

Peter Story Teller

Stats may be insightful if the data is readily available but as for player ratings it is rare that any of the team would drop much below a 7 or 8 unless they have a real howler so what would that actually tell you? I believe that we have a remarkably well balanced team all of whom put in 100% on the pitch and run the game as Joe & Co advise so apart from the occasional 10 from 10 by Viv before being substituted are ratings worth the effort? You could argue that rating individuals is against the “team… Read more »

Christopher Humphrey

As with individual awards in a team game, personally,
I’m not a fan of ‘player ratings’. We all have our favourite players and , as Tim alludes to, the “rater” may not always be totally unbiased.
Even the AWSC POTM occasionally causes a few “rattles to be thrown”! So is it worth it?

Fun Gunner

Thanks, Tim.
Interesting to hear about Joe’s little tactical tweaks. Very impressive.
Birmingham gave it a right go in the second half and were beating us to second balls etc, but we got a clean sheet and another 2 points on the goal difference. And that second goal was mwah!
Kim was excellent, like she’d never been away, but there was a bit of rust evident in some others. Leonie Maier seems to me to have made strides – she’s a bit more aggressive.

Dave cee

What an interesting tactical review, dropping wingers deeper to draw out the fullbacks etc, not often you hear that sort of chat on the men’s side. Things I don.t think of on FM lol