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Match Report

Arsenal add another three to their tally at the Emirates

The Foxes couldn't do enough to stop the Gunners picking up another win in N7

Gareth Taylor Man City_edited.jpg

LCFC Women

22 April 2024

A Beth Mead brace, her second in two games and Alessia Russo’s thirteenth of the season was enough to see Arsenal past a resilient and stubborn Leicester City side in their final Emirates Stadium game of the season. 

Jonas Eidevall made 2 changes to his side from the 5-0 win over Bristol City, with Manuela Zinsbeger returning in goal and Katie McCabe back in the starting eleven. Vivianne Miedema returned to the bench, alongside Frida Maanum, for the first time since her collapse during the Conti Cup Final three weeks ago. 

Leicester and Jennifer Foster only made one change from last weeks heartbreaking loss to Tottenham, with Julie Thibaud taking the place of Josie Green in the starting eleven. 

The Gunners got us underway in the chilly North London air, kicking towards the clock end in the first half. 

The visitors didn’t et the occasion phase them and arguably were the better side in the opening ten minutes, winning an early corner but Zinsberger was out to claim the ball well. 

From the resulting corner, Arsenal launched a rapid counter, but Beth Mead was unable to sort her footing out and Janice Cayman was able to get back and challenge well as Mead looked to cut back inside onto her left. 

The Gunners were starting to purr and ponce again broke, this time down the left with Caitlin Foord cutting the ball back to Beth Mead on the edge, but the effort was well blocked over for a corner which came to nothing.

Deanne Rose provided a constant threat for the visitors, but it was Yuka Momiki who had the first action of the game going forward, taking aim and ripping a left footed effort towards Zinsberger’s top corner, but the Austrian was superbly tipped it behind after seeing the effort all the way.

THe first Arsenal effort on target was also from range, with a free kick being arrowed goal wards by Katie McCabe, but it was straight at Leicester stopper, Lize Kop.

With a flick of a switch just shy of the half hour mark, Arsenal took the lead, with Foord receiving the ball from Victoria Pelova and the former threading a fantastic through ball to Beth Mead who as able to stride onto the perfectly weighted pass and lift the finish past Kop in the Leicester goal, for her third in two games and her seventh of the season. 

Austrian Zinsberger was called into action again to superbly deny Leicester, with Deanne Rose laying the ball off to Saori Takara, who’s looping curled effort was fantastically clawed away by the Arsenal stopper in the last meaningful action of the first half.

HT - Arsenal 1-0 Leicester

Leicester got us underway in the second half, with Caitlin Foord looking ro add to her assist in the first half for Arsenal, with her low driven shot well held by Kop. Katie McCabe was next to aim for the target, sending her dipping, left footed volley over the bar from the edge of the area. 

Arsenal really should’ve doubled their lead ten minutes into the second half after a rampaging run down the right from Emily Fox saw the American deliver a brilliant low ball in, but Foord could only turn the effort into the arms of Kop in the Leicester goal. 

Another quick and incise Gunners move saw Alessia Russo find Emily Fox, who’s initial touch forced her a little wider than she would’ve wanted, but Kop still had to be down well to save her low, powerful effort. 

Fox once again displayed her attacking intent, cutting in from the right hand side before her curling left footed effort needed to be pushed behind by Kop as the Gunners tried to ramp the pressure up. 

To the delight of the watching Emirates faithful, Frida Maanum then made her comeback, replacing Stina Blackstenius and being involved for the first time since her collapse at Molinuex three weeks ago. 

Arsenal did get their second with just over fifteen minutes to go, Steph Catley won the ball back high and slid it sideways to Russo, who made no mistake sliding the ball past Lize Kop for her thirteenth goal in Arsenal colours. 

A third followed not so long afterwards, with a teasing ball in from Maanum, finding Russo who’s header was superbly kept out by Kop, before it scrappily fell to Mead who was gratefully on hand to tap home her second goal of the game. 

Deanne Rose, Lenna Petermann and CJ Bott were then replaced by Shannon O’Brien, Aileen Wheelan and Asmita Ale for Leicster City in the final ten minutes, with Arsenal also making two further changes, Cloe Lacasse replacing Caitlin Foord and Alesia Russo being withdrawn in place of the returning Vivianne Miedema.

Arsenal were soo lose to a fourth, with Maanum so so close to capping a fairytale return, somehow turning the ball wide rather than in from a few yards out, 

As seven minutes aded time were signalled by the fourth official, Zinsberger did well again to claw away a Shannon O’Brien effort. 

The full time whistle blew as Arsenal secured a ninth straight home league win, thanks to goals from Russo and a Beth Mead brace. 

FT - Arsenal 3-0 Leicester

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