Arsenal were beaten 2-0 away at Chelsea on Sunday with first half goals from Guro Reiten and Magda Eriksson. Jonas Eidevall spoke to the press post-match, the first two questions are from Arseblog News.
On struggling to deal with Chelsea’s press in the first half…
We started slow, we didn’t take decisions quick enough, we don’t execute passes well enough to escape their pressure and that builds a lot of momentum for them. That part was the most dissatisfying part of the game, it isn’t a surprise they will press and we know we can execute better, we showed that in the second half. That was disappointing.
On dealing with Chelsea’s pressure better in the second half…
We didn’t change much, the options were there and we showed a couple of clips from the first half but if you can’t execute there is no way we can play out. It was just to do it better and we know we can do it better. Sometimes it is down to that technical detail and today it was. It was great to see the players in the second half, fearless, brave, they really tried. Once we had better quality we moved Chelsea around and created good goal scoring opportunities.
On not being able to confirm Champions League qualification…
It depends on what mindset you have. I have never been under the impression that the last game would mean nothing. It has been tough for us with injuries and my mindset has been that we need to do everything in every single minute of the season to try to finish as high as possible. Nothing changes because of today’s result. That has not been in my mind so it changes nothing. If we look at it in a positive way, it should be in our own hands in control of our own destiny and that is the preference.
On squad building for next season…
All teams are going to continue to invest and be better. I don’t think we can assume that next season will be the same, it’s about next season and it will be important to have a strong squad as possible. But that is what we are aiming for and building for. The title is out of our hands now but we can see there have been really really fine margins with these points. Those details matter a lot in the end but we learn from them so let’s finish the season strongly and after that I have full belief that we will be very competitive next season.
On whether the injury situation made it too difficult to compete for the title…
It is one factor. When we are building for next season we know player availability is an important KPI if you’re going to be successful. Then we know the amount of games is not going to be less the competitiveness is not going to be less so we need a deeper squad in order to deal with those situations. You see that with Chelsea here, they have been able to use their squad in a very, very good way. That is something we need to improve next season.
On whether it hurts to see Chelsea on the brink of a fourth consecutive title…
It hurts more that we don’t win the title, it is all about us. It’s not about them (Chelsea) doing it, my disappointment is that we don’t do it.
1.Zinsberger,; 3.Wubben-Moy, 5.Beattie (20.Gio ‘88), 2.Rafaelle; 16.Maritz (17.Hurtig ‘79), 21.Pelova, 12.Maanum, 15.McCabe(c); 22.Kuhl (7.Catley HT), 19.Foord; 25.Blackstenius (27.Taylor ‘73).
Unused: 14.D’Angelo, 18.Marckese, 29.Goldie, 50.Doe, 56.Godfrey.
Nice to see that the Men’s team doesn’t have the monopoly for bottling big games.
Half the ladies first team has been missing for months. It’s a bloody miracle they are third!
Fine margins today, Caitlin doesn’t hit the bar, Katie doesn’t miss the penalty and it is 2:2.
Don’t forget the good chance Stina missed in the first half (13′) when she waited to take the shot.
Reiten is a very good player but her first-half goal was rather lucky….
Arsenal had a deep squad this year; you just can’t expect to lose half your starters to serious injuries. Arsenal every year has more injuries than anybody. Team has played with great spirit anyway, and they should be proud of that.
I didn’t see it as bottling. We’ve been running partly on emotion for a couple of months, and that wave has just subsided, is all. One good thing about this season is that we have finally knocked on the head our “big team freeze”. We don’t get bullied any more, either.
There is a section on this site dedicated to Arsenal women. If you start going through it today, you would be more knowledgeable about the women’s team before the start of next season.
Then when you comment on the women’s team, you would be doing it based on knowledge.
No Viv, Beth, Leah, Kim, Caitlin was out for a while as well and recently Lia and Laura. That’s the equivalent of the men’s team playing City with no Martinelli, Jesus, Saka, Odegaard, Xhaka, Saliba and Gabriel. So the ladies can be forgiven not winning today. They have at least added silverware this season and with such a depleted squad!
Or to put it another way how well do you think Chelsea would do away to the Arsenal ladies without, Kerr, Reiten, Harder, Cuthbert, James, Eriksson and Mjelde?
I hope JE now has all the ammunition he needs to get the board to agree to recruit a couple more players. 24 is the absolute bare minimum, IMO. In practice, we need far more than the number of matches would seem to merit. As to the game….much better second half but given how well we have played recently, I am still disappointed. The upside is that we created opportunities in both halves. But it felt as if we’d slipped back to the level we were at before the Conti Cup final – lots of effort but not enough quality… Read more »
Yeah, Lotte is our third choice CB and, on paper, that’s mad given her level and you would think it would not be ideal because you’d have a big player not playing. Yet the only outfield players to play more minutes this season are McCabe and Blackstenius.
Given our current situation this might have been an inevitable result but a bit disappointed to get nothing from the game. If the penalty goes in I think there’s a different result, but props to the team for going at it in the second half. Encouraging to see that the Frida- Pelova double pivot is functional, our midfield may be okay without signing another holding midfielder in the summer
What’s left of the squad have been brilliant these last few months but how many more seasons will we go before we eventually agree we need more depth to the squad and that means more quality players? I know we have a great starting 11 but year after year only half of them are available and we have to play players out of their positions or drop academy players into the fray because there is no one else apart from Bill Hall who often volunteers for a spot on the bench. I also know people will say you cannot sign… Read more »
Agree about squad depth i was just thinking about a Lia understudy/ future replacement because it looks like no one is selling 6’s I just think its encouraging that our midfield looks functional without one. But obviously ideally we have someone who can play that role similar to the way Lia does
I think we should *definitely* sign Bill Hall! 😆 It must be tempting for the club to say, look how well we’ve done with “stand-ins”, this year was an outlier in terms of injuries, let’s carry on as we are. That would be a mistake. I agree that versatility has enabled us to navigate the injury crises without too much of a drop in quality. Players like Foord and Pelova and McCabe who can play several positions really well. Maritz can play LB as effectively as RB. But as brilliantly as the stand-ins have performed, we didn’t have any game… Read more »
Yeah, I don’t know what Teyah has to do to get a game. She had a long term injury but she’s over that now so get her on the pitch. Why not give her a start vs Villa after all we are third in the WSL now unless City can find a difference of 12 goals more than us in a single game?
BTW I hope the unnamed player moves on too!
I was at the game and the first thing to say is that the supporters were magnificent! Chelsea are back to full strength and there aren’t many teams that could hold out against a front three of Kerr, Harder and Reiten. Yet in the second half we competed really well.
Now it’s later in the evening we know United did us a great favour: European football is guaranteed as long as there isn’t an eleven-goal swing against us on the final day. This should surely help us in attracting the new players that the squad needs.
I hope we get the players in this time. Eidevall has confirmed we didn’t get enough players in each of the last two transfer windows
I hope we don’t lose Viv in the summer!
We won’t. She’s getting back from injury and has one more year on her contract.
Is Lauren Hemp a realistic target? She’s not been quite at her best this season and the prospect of European football working for a better manager than her current one must be attractive. She’s from Norfolk so no direct allegiance to Manchester.
You would hope she could be tempted but have no idea what sort of deal City gave her.