Arsenal were 2-1 victors over Manchester City in the WSL at Meadow Park back in November. On that day, they opened the scoring through Steph Catley before being pegged back by a Chloe Kelly equaliser.
City got on top of the game in the second half, having 59% possession and attempting 17 shots to Arsenal’s nine. However, the Gunners were 2-1 winners on the day thanks to a late winner from Stina Blackstenius, which arose on the counter attack.
On that day, Eidevall told Arseblog News that he put Blackstenius on because he detected that his team wanted to sit back a little and he wanted the option for his players to hit the channels.
However, in his pre City press conference, Eidevall suggested that, while he and his coaching staff felt they should adapt to the game state that he doesn’t really want to repeat that approach on Sunday.
“We have been very, very good when time and space has been presented to us so far this season. I think there is not a way to play against City where you can only be in a low block because they are a very good crossing team, probably the best crossing team in the world in women’s football.
“If you allow them to cross the ball too many times, they will eventually score. You need to restrict those moments which also means you need to spend more time defending higher up the pitch.” Eidevall explained that leaning too much into the approach of the second half of the previous game would be less likely to reap rewards.
“Of course we are a team that also wants to have the ball. We had too little of the ball against them at Meadow Park earlier in the season for mine and the team’s liking.
“On that day when things progressed like they did in the game, then we thought ‘ok, let’s roll with that game state and punish them on transitions’ which we were successful with. But as a team, for our liking, we wanted more of the ball in that game.”