Joe Montemurro reacts to 4-0 victory over Birmingham City

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Arsenal were 4-0 winners on the road for the second weekend in succession as they defeated Birmingham City with a first half brace from Caitlin Foord and second half strikes from Vivianne Miedema and Lisa Evans. Joe Montemurro spoke to the press afterwards, the first three questions are from Arseblog News, the others are from other journalists.

On playing Vivianne Miedema in a deeper role with Caitlin Foord through the middle today…
We’ve tinkered with it in games but we’ve never started with it with a kind of false 9 and Viv in the 10. Birmingham play with a back five so we knew the spaces would be very reduced so we wanted to get Viv in a position to play in the pocket and play vertically and then we could play both sides of Birmingham and just get her peeling away from the defensive line. We had a lot of success with it in the first half but it was a different idea today, yes.

On Caitlin Foord scoring a first half brace…
Since she has been here I have been signing her praises and she was a player we targeted and wanted in my first couple of years here. She’s an amazing person firstly and the contribution she makes, away from the ball as much as anything, her ability to find room and to take players away is really important for her teammates. When she plays through the middle she’s very helpful for the wingers because she takes a lot of focus off the wide areas because centrally she’s so strong. She’s been great and she’s getting her rewards and finding her rhythm again.

On bringing Kim Little, Jill Roord, Lisa Evans and Leonie Maier off the bench…
We’ve never made excuses of the injuries because the players who have been available have done a great job and I trusted them 150% but as a manager you want options, you want the ability to see something in a game and say, ‘ok, I have this option and I can change this.’ All credit to Lisa, she’s a strong finisher of games and we’re happy to have that.

On subbing Caitlin Foord when she was on a hat-trick…
If it was me I would probably have a go at the coach but you’ll have to ask Caitlin! It was purely load management, she had 60-70 minutes in her and we just felt we had to get her off to keep her rhythm going- this was planned before the game.

On Kim Little returning from injury…
I think everyone is happy to see Kim in our team and available because of the control he has of a game, we’ve just got to find a bit more rhythm for her and hopefully we can get her right for the run-in.

On back-to-back 4-0 away wins…
We always knew about our capabilities and our capacity to play, we know what we can do, sometimes you’ve just got to roll with the punches. I believe in this team and I always have and it was really nice to get back to our style and controlling games again and good attacking play, that’s where we want to be and that’s where we want to stay.

On the rearranged game at home to West Ham…
We’ve proposed a few slots and now it’s with the people that make those decisions, we just have to wait and see. We’re getting a little frustrated with it, I’ll be honest, because we want that game played and to keep our rhythm going and we will have a break before the United game now which is not what we wanted. There is a free Friday and Saturday night next week, I understand they want to keep the Conti cup day free, that makes sense. But there is a date for it this weekend but for some reason, the powers that be are not making a decision on it at this stage.

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Dirk

More of the same, thanks

Viv the 🐐

Was very much alright. Nice to see us not making more horrendous mistakes this week.
Up The Arsenal!

HenryKamp

Now, could we do the same against United in the next match Joe!

ParteyPants

Not relevant to this I know but I haven’t been able to sign-up to “The Arses” and still wanted to get a message through to Andrew & send him my deepest condolences.

I’ve been reading your blog most days for ten years and they continue to be wonderful, even when Arsenal most definitely haven’t been at times, so it wasn’t surprising how beautifully you wrote this morning through the pain. Your Dad no doubt continues to be enormously proud wherever we might believe that may be.

Cry, eat cake, think of the good times x

Chris

For Andrew,
sorry for your loss, made even worse by not being able to morn in a communal way and yeah your dad looks well cool in that photo.
best regards

verstellung

I would tell Mead that the next time she shoots from outside the box, it better be on target or she gets benched.

verstellung

If you can, go back and watch the shot at ~54min
Be sure to check out Miedema’s reaction…She looks thoroughly pissed as she was open in the box.