Thursday, April 25, 2024

Jonas Eidevall reacts to Wolfsburg defeat

Arsenal were eliminated from the Champions League after a 2-0 defeat to Wolfsburg in Germany on Thursday evening. Jonas Eidevall spoke to the press post-match, the first question is from Arseblog News.

On how Arsenal adjusted in the second half to get away from Wolfsburg’s high press…
We didn’t make a big adjustment, it’s about small details. We changed a little how our midfielders moved to drag their players out even more into those positions. I also think it might be a consequence of them winning, they didn’t want to commit fully so high anymore. We knew they were going to play like that, I think they were disappointed with the way they portrayed themselves in the first leg, they looked like a more passive team and didn’t get their pressing right.

The only way it could go in this game was to go higher and harder. Because of their schedule there was no way they had time to train and change their methods so we knew it. I am disappointed we didn’t do better with it in the first half because I think the situations were there but we weren’t good enough at creating enough and when we came to 3 v 2 situations we didn’t profit on it.

On how much Lia Walti was missed and why she wasn’t available…
She has been great for us, I would lie if i would say we didn’t miss her but our focus needs to be on the players that we have. It is a big, big test to focus on the things you can control. To understand why Lia Walti wasn’t available is impossible. It is impossible to understand why Lia Walti was not allowed to travel alone today to be with the team, UEFA doesn’t allow her to travel alone on the match day. But on Sunday, she will travel alone to the Swiss national team camp and meet up and play international games. I don’t know, it’s beyond my knowledge, it is what it is and we have to accept it, of course it is frustrating not being able to use a player who has been very valuable for us this season.

On why Lia Walti couldn’t travel on Wednesday…
She could not travel with the team at that time when we had the flight from London, if you can’t travel on the team flight, you’re not allowed to travel and play a Champions League game.

On whether WSL games provide good preparation for Champions League matches…
I think it prepares us well, it’s different styles, there aren’t so many top teams in the WSL who man mark like Wolfsburg and we have been exposed to that against Hoffenheim, Wolfsburg and Barcelona. We can see it’s a trend in Europe that they man-mark more. It helps also when you can pull a player down every time you aren’t successful and don’t get any yellow cards. If that’s the case, then it’s a brilliant system to work with, that wouldn’t work in England, you would get some yellow cards, maybe that is just different.

Kim Little also joined the press conference and Arseblog News asked the captain a question, as below.

On the learning point from the game for Arsenal…
It’s hard to reflect this quickly, the big learning point for me is that we played really well at times during both legs but not for long enough, across the two legs we weren’t clinical enough with our chances. At the key moments we didn’t keep the ball well enough, especially in our attacking third and we got countered a lot. That is one thing on reflection. At this level, we need to be much better at that.

1.Zinsberger; 16.Maritz (26.Wienroither ‘78), 6.Williamson, 3.Wubben-Moy, 7.Catley; 12.Maanum (8.Nobbs 71), 10.Little(c), 11.Miedema; 77.Heath (19.Foord HT), 15.McCabe (14.Parris 70); 25.Blackstenius.

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Why even deflect the result by talking about UEFA rules and Wally not being allowed to travel last minute because she tested negative for covid? The game was lost by the players on the pitch and by the tactics of the coach.


Was he not responding to a question in a press conference?


This whole article is taken up by that. Timmy could ask his own questions can’t he?


Sorry – just seen the rest of your comments. You’re here to troll. Bye.


Just not true. The WHOLE article is not taken up by “that”…meaning Lia’s absence.


There only 5 question two of which are about Lia and not the way we played or the result.


Did you not read the introduction?
Tim clearly states that he asked the first question. The other questions were asked by other journalists. This was a manager simply answering the questions put to him at a press conference.


So do we know why Walti did not travel with the team? Was it a Covid issue? The idea that a player can’t travel alone to a CL game seems beyond absurd. What’s the thinking behind it, anyone know? As for the game, the first half was rather embarrassing–a repeat of what we saw against Barca twice; couldn’t get the ball out of our own half–and I frankly doubt Walti would have made much of a difference. Maybe, but she got pushed off the ball quite a lot by Barca, and everybody on our team got pushed off the ball… Read more »


She had covid. It’s not that she can’t travel alone if healthy the day of the game is a bit late to ask for permission to join back up with the team after being ruled out of travelling with the team because you had covid.


This was really painful viewing. The team looked absolutely lost in the first half, it was Sunday league hangover type football…it was that bad.

I watch most of the women’s games and I’ve never seen the team look as disjointed as tonight. I don’t really know where they go from here, it’s not looking great.


Only Little, Wubben-Moy, and Leah Williamson walked out of that pitch with any credit in the first half. It felt like we weren’t even trying enough at times. There’s still a lot of work to be done, for sure.


Leah did score you are right, great game from her I’m sure the rest of the players appreciated her sterling efforts


Perhaps rewatch the game? It’s free. You’ll see her sterling efforts in defence.


She’s one of best players. She was just unfortunate with the own goal. I doubt you even watched the match.

DB's first touch

“I’ve never seen the team look as disjointed as tonight.” Perhaps you didn’t see the FA cup final against Chelsea then? I understand the disappointment stemming from the result but I don’t think we were quite THAT bad.


I’ve never seen anyone have a field day against Maritz like that Jongdosttir had today. She plays like Martinelli; always running at defenders. Was impressed with her.

Also, we missed Lia today. Think adding a CDM in the summer is a must. Would be terrifc if that CDM is Oberdoff. Proper player. 


I was also impressed with her and without Mead we had very little in the first half on the flanks. They pressed, we hurried and turned over. They just looked more energetic and organized. Little became good but even she turned it over in a stellar Wolfsburg opening 10. Really disappointing from Arsenal tocday


Bayern flew to Paris the day before game Tuesday , one of their subs was playing for a German underages team that day but was allowed on the bench for Wednesday


Lia had to test negative first it’s not the same thing

Noddy 81

I was pretty annoyed I had to work & couldn’t even watch on telly…. don’t think I’ll be watching highlights now!

We had the same issue under Joe at the end, but any half decent opposition that presses and we sh*t the bed (Chelsea (cup final), Barcelona, Hoffenheim, Wolfsburg)…….

I understand progress takes time….I just don’t see much progress in the big games yet – I just hope they get it right against Chelsea in the FA cup next


Tommy Stroot hasn’t needed all this time that Jonas apparently needs to build a successful team. Do we give Jonas a free pass next season because he brings in new players this summer?


Not sure I know what a “free pass ” means. However, as only Stina, Rafa and Laura are Jonas signings my answer would be yes to more time.
In terms of the European competition we have achieved top eight status in our last two entries into the CL. That is progress imo.
The season is far from over.


I actually think Jonas brought in a bunch of players both in the summer and January, and actually that might have been part of the problem. We don’t have a settled 11 and Jonas has tinkered with the lineup quite a bit. Also Blackstenius is very new to the team and Viv has only been playing at the No. 10 for a few games. Seems like a lot of change. Some of this, of course has been imposed on him via injuries and yellow/red cards. But I do think his changes haven’t helped. We’ve seen with the men’s squad the… Read more »


If we consider the “big games” in the WSL this season – Chelski and Manks x 2 – P 6 W 3, D3, L0 this is the best return we’ve had for a decade.


But we’ll end the season the same as last year under Joe – with nothing
That’s not progress if there’s no final end product. We can’t be happy with coming second in the league or by losing in a final- again.
Jonas has to sort this out.


Uh, no. You can have progress without trophies. We will likely end up second rather than third, and we’ve cut the gap with Chelsea. Focusing on just end result can be problematic.

Noddy 81

City have been out of form first half of season, take them out of it. We were lucky to beat Chelsea at the Emirates (offside) and drew at home. We lost in the cup final.
We shouldn’t be losing to Hoffenheim that badly. We shouldn’t be that bad against Barcelona at home (no matter how bloody good they are)…..4-0 isn’t acceptable, we’re Arsenal & the girls are better than that…….so why so shit in the crunch games?

(I’m not pro/anti
Jonas at this time, just impatient )

Noddy 81

^i don’t consider Man U a big team yet


Monte’s Arsenal never looked as bad as the Gunners looked against Barca and, today, Wolfsburg–although admittedly his teams, late in his tenure, had the same problem of not being able to get it out of the defensive half. But Monte was coping with more injury issues, as I recall–Little was out for some of those Monte losses, for example.


I’ve just come back from a very cold VW Arena and though it wasn’t great, I’m probably not as negative and some. Wolfsburg are an excellent all-round team. They are very good counter-attackers, but their tackling is exceptional. Every time Stina, and especially Viv, received the ball with their back to the goal, someone was on them and, more often than not, won the ball. Could you say the referee was too lax? Occasionally, maybe, but not enough to change the game. The problem was that we didn’t play enough passes ahead of the player for them to run into.… Read more »

Gautam Bhatia

It was freezing, wasn’t it?

Also, I agree with most of this. We looked ragged at times, but Wolfsburg were objectively excellent, and we were in the tie for around 170 minutes out of the 180. Some good moments in the second half especially, where a better final ball might have made the difference. The gap is there, but it isn’t insurmountable.


Pretty much agree too – experience for the team and coach will (hopefully) provide something to build on for next season in the UWCL. Better final ball, yes, but also holding on to it in the first place – there were plenty of decent passes foward but the ball was then too often lost. Also thought Leah and Lotte were key to keeping the score to 1-0 in the first half, but pace at the back is still an issue, with the exception of Leah.

SLC Gooner

I think the biggest miss in these last two matches was Raffaele. Seemed like she has better pace and added solidity to the defense that was lacking in both matches.

DB's first touch

hear hear


Blackstenius and Miedema have to get better at receiving the ball with their backs to the goal though. And they desperately need to improve their link up play, Blackstenius in particular. We suffered so much more in the first half just because those two kept losing it or giving it away. Would be great to buy a less one dimensional attacker, someone who could hold up the ball and be a target and linkup man and an arial threat, and someone with more pace and technique. I’m holding out for Oshoala or Katoto. And while they’re at it, they should… Read more »


Arsenal don’t need Oshoala or Katoto. Blackstenius’s game is much like Oshoala’s—excellent pace, good on the counter. Barca don’t rely on Oshoala for hold-up play. For me playing Miedema at the 10 is NOT working. She is very technical but is also tall and lanky and thus is vulnerably to getting pushed off the ball. The best hold-up/strong on the ball players are stout and/or have a lower center of gravity–see Little, others. Why not play a two-man front with Miedema and Stina–and then Little is your attacking mid? A 4-4-2? Our midfield and out outside backs have not been… Read more »

Peter Story Teller

Ultimately we need back up for Meado and Wally as we missed both of them in this game. Still don’t understand why Katie was on the right either when we know her running in front of Steph works. Tobin was brought in to cover for Meado so why didn’t she start on the right and leave Katie where she is best suited?

Peter Story Teller

We had Oshoala once and gave her away because to be honest at Arsenal she showed nothing whatsoever!


Arsenal was fully rested and should have looked the better team with no game in between the UWCL legs. Wolfsburg had to play against a team vying for a UWCL spot. Not having Walti hurt them badly. Wolfsburg were just better, it’s okay to say it. That Harder money paid them hella dividends.


Can’t wait to see if the refs let Wolfsburg get away with kicking uefa’s beloved Barca off the pitch with no yellow cards.
That aside, wolfsburg showed up, we didnt. I think bayern and wolfsburg really gave a good account of the quality of the frauenbundesliga.
Oh and the entire refereeing team did not show up as well. 4min to check a clear offside, and no pen given to parris? I know people will argue that parris jumped to avoid contact- no wonder players feel they need to seek contact, need to fall in order to get the decision.

Chuck Felsea

I agree 100 percent. The penalty would not have changed anything and Wolfsburg deserved to be in the semis, but to not give that is one of the most ridiculous decisions I have witnessed in the last years. Seems like you have to let one leg down while jumping to entangle, even seek the strong contact (potentially in the face of the keeper if unlucky), risk your own injury as well and only then you will get a penalty. I hate playacting to get a penalty, but it seems it becomes a necessary part. To the husband or boyfriend of… Read more »


If there was any contact by the Wolfsburg keeper on Parris, it was slight and, in my view, Parris embellished her tumble. Someone mentioned that the keeper can’t impede the attacking player if she doesn’t make contact with the ball. I didn’t know that was a PK rule—but the keeper did do that.


I was right in line for the two VAR incidents and I cannot understand why they took so long. The offside seemed very clear. As for the penalty, either the keeper got the ball before contact with Keets or not; it’s probably one I’d be upset to give away if it happened at the other end.

I’ve also just looked at highlights of Wolfsburg’s 4-0 defeat of Chelsea and took some comfort that our defence was not cut apart in the way Chelsea’s was.

And please can the Lunch Box start serving Currywurst!

Peter Story Teller

VAR is now beginning to ruin the women’s game too! It was brought in as an arbitrator for times when the referee could not make the correct call. The ref correctly awarded Jill Roord’s goal so why did we have to wait minutes for VAR to confirm she was right? The ref gave the offside which was patently the correct decision on first viewing so why was VAR involved? The only time it should have interferred with the game was for Keet’s potential penalty and then it got the decision wrong anyway!!! At first sight that could have been given… Read more »


VAR reviews all goals, doesn’t it? Or least all goals that might involve an offside or in-the-box rule. I don’t have a problem with VAR calls involving goals–it should, IMO–but it shouldn’t take as long as it did to review that offside call.


The problem with VAR is the inconsistency in when it is triggered (or by whom), and the interpretation of the rules.
It does not eliminate human error, but rather increases it because it is another human being behind it.
In the worst case scenario, VAR even legitimises human error, incompetence, or even corruption. Imagine hearing: “VAR checked and there is nothing wrong”. That makes it even worse, no?


I thought Wolfsburg were excellent tbf. Oberdorff was immense. Plusses were MZ, LW, LWM and Kim Little was immense. Tobin Heath was very poor and Viv was well off the pace. Lia a big miss. Nikita needs to move, she isn’t thriving. Ref was too lax especially aggressive press of Viv. Still progress imho.

Ship out Frida, Tobin and Nikita plus sign a top class defensive midfielder and another central defender and Arsenal will not be far off.


Our forwards hardly saw the ball in the first half because it was almost always in our defensive half, so I’m not sure what one expects of them. If you have to go back deep into your team’s defensive half constantly to help get the ball out, it’s pretty hard to be an effective forward. We’ve seen this problem before. Maybe Heath should have done more to help Catley, who struggled, but then I’ll admit the coach sees and knows more than I do. I don’t think playing Miedema at the 10 with Stina in front will work against the… Read more »

Peter Story Teller

It has been highlighted before and whatever the reason Keets is struggling at Arsenal. I can see her going at the end of her contract. You are right Steph struggled without the protection of Katie but I doubt if Tobin will be around for long. The disappointment is Frida. We assumed she would be back up for Lia after Malin left and everyone at Arsenal including Jonas wanted her but it is apparent her play is nothing like Wally’s and it is difficult to see what she adds to the team at the moment. Maybe it is the coaching that… Read more »


Malin Gut was Wally replacement and plays the same role. Frida is not a CDM. Jonas had more time with the team than Stroot did and still could form a tactical game plan to have Arsenal play their game. Nobbs should have started in place of Maanum and Foord instead of Heath.
What happened to our pressing game? What happened to hitting on the counter? Playing balls in behind the backline for runners? Where were the runners? Credit to Stroot and WOB they dictated the game and the scoreline should have been worse.


Tobin Heath was everywhere in the first half, getting balls from players, playing left and right. And was called back into defense far too often. Wolfsburg were incredibly physical, and did body a lot of players off the ball. There were a lot of non calls. The early goal is something we need to stop giving up, especially on corners. Stinia needed to cover the back post better, the clearance was terrible, and Zinsberger’s positioning was poor too, but while watching I’m pretty sure she was playing injured. Stinia has a terrible first touch! It’s often too heavy, and her… Read more »


The confetti was clearly cursed 🙁

Adrian Scott

The girls did their best and I feel so sorry for Leah who, if she had lifted her leg an inch lower would have saved the second goal. Jonas does need to come up with a potent strategy to the swarm tactics that Wolfsburg used since I can see other WSL teams adopting it against Arsenal.


Of all the players who have left Arsenal since we won the WSL three years ago, the one I really miss is Dominique Janssen.

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