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Five-star Gunners stun Liverpool

Arsenal boss Montemurro ‘a happy man’ after seeing his side thrash Women’s Super League rivals

13 September, 2018 — By Steve Barnett

Vivianne Miedema hit a hat-trick as Arsenal beat Liverpool 5-0 in the Women’s Super League. PHOTO: ARSENAL FC

ARSENAL boss Joe Montemurro said he was “a happy man” after watching his side kick off the new Women’s Super League season by dismantling Liverpool on Sunday.

Vivianne Miedema hit a hat-trick as the Gunners thrashed rivals 5-0 at Meadow Park despite putting out a heavily rotated side due to injuries. Miedema also chalked up an assist for Lisa Evans, while Kim Little was also on target.

Afterwards Montemurro was full of praise for the “proactive and positive” manner in which the north Londoners recorded their comprehensive win.

“We’d seen a little bit of Liverpool and the way that they play, and we felt that we could overload them in certain areas and be quite dominant,” he told Arsenal.com.

“We’re always going to have a lot of the ball, that’s our nature and our style, it’s just a matter of making it proactive and positive for the way that we want to play. I suppose it’s an addition to last year’s work when Katie McCabe and Lisa Evans played as attacking style full-backs, and Sunday was the perfect day for it because Liverpool played with wing-backs, so our ability to get forward and exploit the spaces was there.”

He added: “We look to create lines of passing all over the pitch and aim to position ourselves in important areas all over the pitch. We had numbers going forward, and a lot of numbers in good positions.

“They weren’t sure which player to take and which player not to take and, as I keep on saying, when you start pulling players out of position and bringing other players into position, and then you start rotating in and out of areas, it’s very hard to mark.

“We’ve made a mental goal to make sure that the league is the most important thing this year. We want to win the league and that’s what really counts. Cups are important and they’re fantastic, but the reality is that for us to be the team that we want to be, we need to be up there in the league, so the focus on the WSL in every game is very important.”

Meanwhile champions Chelsea, who are managed by former Parliament Hill School pupil Emma Hayes, began the defence of their Women’s Super League title with a goalless draw against Manchester City.

On her return to the dugout after having a baby at the end of last season, Hayes said it would take time for her side to rediscover their rhythm.

“We’ve got new players, we’re trying a new system – you can’t just snap your fingers and it happens,” she said.

“I looked at the bench and each of the subs that came on had an impact, as we expect them to every game, and we should be sitting here talking about a 1-0 win.”

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