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Arsenal 4-2 Birmingham City: Gunners go eight points clear at top of WSL

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Vivianne Miedema scores
Vivianne Miedema became the first player to score 50 WSL goals in October 2020

Vivianne Miedema became the first player to reach 100 Women’s Super League goal contributions as leaders Arsenal saw off Birmingham.

The highest scorer in WSL history, Miedema doubled Arsenal’s lead with a cool first-half finish at Meadow Park.

Rafaelle Souza had opened the scoring and Beth Mead put Arsenal 3-0 up.

Libby Smith and Lucy Quinn gave Birmingham hope, but Caitlin Foord’s late strike moved Arsenal eight points clear at the top of the table.

Arsenal last won the WSL in 2019 and this result gives them a handy cushion over reigning champions Chelsea, although Emma Hayes’ side have three games in hand.

In Miedema, Arsenal have the league’s crowning talent and she oozed class throughout. Her 100 goal contributions comprise 70 goals and 30 assists since her arrival in 2017.

Her 10th goal of the season was more than Birmingham had scored in total in the WSL this season before the game.

Arsenal’s defeat by the Blues eight weeks ago was the shock result of the campaign, but it remains the only victory of a difficult season for Darren Carter’s team.

Although they struggled to create anything, they found some spirit in the last 15 minutes to punish defensive complacency from their hosts, Smith bundling home and Quinn threatening a spectacular comeback with a fine finish.

Jonas Eidevall’s side looked nervous as Birmingham hunted an unlikely point, but broke away and clinched the points as Foord fired home in stoppage time.

Line-ups

Arsenal Women

Formation 4-3-3

  • 1Zinsberger
  • 26WienroitherBooked at 75mins
  • 6Williamson
  • 2Carvalho Souza
  • 7CatleySubstituted forHeathat 72′minutes
  • 10LittleSubstituted forMaanumat 72′minutes
  • 11MiedemaSubstituted forIwabuchiat 72′minutes
  • 13WältiBooked at 61mins
  • 9MeadSubstituted forNobbsat 90+3′minutes
  • 25BlacksteniusSubstituted forFoordat 60′minutes
  • 15McCabe

Substitutes

  • 3Wubben-Moy
  • 5Beattie
  • 8Nobbs
  • 12Maanum
  • 16Maritz
  • 18Williams
  • 19Foord
  • 23Iwabuchi
  • 77Heath

B’ham City Women

Formation 3-4-3

  • 1Hourihan
  • 30LawleyBooked at 44mins
  • 4Quinn
  • 3Scott
  • 14Finn
  • 10Murray
  • 7Sarri
  • 25HollowayBooked at 58mins
  • 23WhelanSubstituted forRyan-Doyleat 75′minutes
  • 12Smith
  • 17Quinn

Substitutes

  • 22Ryan-Doyle
  • 27Jenner
  • 29Jones
  • 32Cowie
  • 39Timms
  • 40Cole

Referee:
Robert Massey-Ellis

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