Thursday, June 13, 2024

Report: Arsenal 2-0 Liverpool (inc goals)

1.Zinsberger; 2.Fox, 28.Ilestedt, 3.Wubben-Moy, 15.McCabe(c); 21.Pelova, 13.Walti; 9.Mead, 11.Miedema, 19.Foord; 23.Russo.

Subs: 14.D’Angelo (GK), 6.Williamson, 7.Catley, 10.Little, 12.Maanum, 24.Lacasse, 25.Blackstenius, 27.Codina, 32.Cooney-Cross.

Arsenal beat Liverpool to keep pace with Chelsea and Manchester City in the WSL, with Vivianne Miedema’s first goal since returning from a ruptured ACL proving the winner.

In his 100th game, Jonas Eidevall made 8 changes to the team that beat Reading 6-0 midweek in the Conti Cup, with Eidevall naming the same starting lineup that beat Watford and Everton.

First Half

Arsenal’s first chance came after three minutes. Pelova wriggled her way into the box and found Russo, but Russo’s effort on her left foot was tame, not troubling Rachel Laws in the Liverpool goal.

From a corner, the ball was recycled back to Pelova, whose clipped ball was nodded on by Wubben-Moy for Foord, who just couldn’t collect and finish ahead of Laws.

Arsenal were having a majority of the possession, but had yet to create a significant chance, with Liverpool’s player-marking system making it harder for Arsenal to find space and to play a number of passes in the final third. Pelova tried her luck from the edge of the box, but her shot was straight at Laws.

Arsenal did have a penalty shout after half an hour. After a corner, Mead won the ball back on the edge of the area, and was clipped. But the referee waved away the muted appeals that mostly came from Mead, and play continued.

Towards the end of the first half Fox, who showed off her recovery pace to snuff a Liverpool counter, won a corner. Wubben-Moy met Mead’s delivery, but headed straight at Laws.

Liverpool had their own chance in stoppage time. After collecting possession in midfield, Lawley was played in down the side of Ilestedt, and her cross found Daniels in the middle of the box, but under pressure from McCabe her shot went over. Then Arsenal nearly found the breakthrough as Foord’s cross deflected off Gemma Bonner but the ball was cleared off the line.

Second Half

Arsenal started the second half much in the same vein as the first; taking unnecessary touches that slowed attacks down. McCabe was played into space but instead of crossing, slowed the attack down and went backwards, and then Pelova, who won the ball back with Laws out of her net, tried to slip in Miedema rather than take a more direct route.

And then Arsenal got the breakthrough from Vivianne Miedema on the hour mark. Fox won the ball back, and then smartly passed to Miedema, who from the edge of the box hit a swerving shot that beat Laws. It’s Miedema’s first goal since returning from rupturing her ACL, and she even celebrated. 1-0.

Fox had set up the first goal and she was heavily involved in the second. She cut inside and played a superb through ball with her left foot for Russo, who ran onto the ball and played it across for Foord, who had a simple tap in to make it 2-0.

Eidevall than rang the changes, as Kim Little replaced Miedema, Stina Blackstenius replaced Russo, and Steph Catley replaced McCabe, who was booked for taking too long to come off the pitch.

Fox, involved again, played another fantastic ball for Blackstenius to run onto and her cutback flashed across the box, with Foord unable to provide a telling touch.

Blackstenius should’ve made it three. She was played in by a simple ball over the top by Wälti, and was one on one with the advancing Laws, but her attempted lob went over the bar. Laws then saved Blackstenius’ first time strike, as Arsenal pushed for the third.

With five minutes left of normal time remaining, Cloé Lacasse replaced Mead, and Frida Maanum replaced Pelova, so there’d be no WSL return for Leah Williamson.

Fox, the game’s outstanding player, then played another inch perfect through ball for Blackstenius, but Laws able to get a hand on the ball as the Swede attempted to go around her.

In stoppage time, Zinsberger was called into action. Mia Enderby ran onto a flicked header, beat the Arsenal back line, but shot straight at Zinsberger who was out quickly.

Blackstenius then had another excellent chance in the final minute of stoppage time. Little played in Lacasse, whose pass from the right was perfect for Blackstenius, who hit the post with Laws beaten.

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Much better second half. Happy to see Viv getting back to form – some of her hold-up play and passes to switch play, in particular, caught my eyes.

Btw, I think Lacasse deserves more than 5 minute cameos in the league.


Seeing Viv backk on the scoresheet makes me so happy for her COYG

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