Arsenal Ladies have another trophy to add to their collection after a 4-0 win over rivals Charlton in the Community Shield on Thursday night.

Goals from Ciara Grant, Lianne Sanderson and two for makeshift striker Jayne Ludlow were more than enough for Vic Akers' side after a confident display.

First choice striking partnership Kelly Smith and Julie Fleeting were both left out of the line-up so Sanderson started up front with midfielder Ludlow.

The pair rewarded Akers' faith in them with three strikes between them after Grant had opened the scoring after 13 minutes.

Rachel McArthur, making her full debut, was fouled in the box and the referee awarded the penalty. Grant saw her first effort saved by Pauline Cope but drilled the rebound into the roof of the net.

Two minutes later Arsenal were really in control after Ludlow added a second. The Welsh international latched on to a pass from Sanderson and, after beating her marker, sent a fine strike just inside the far post.

Charlton still looked like they might come back into the game and forced two good saves from Emma Byrne either side of the break. However, Sanderson wrapped up the victory on the hour with Arsenal's third, a close range shot from a McArthur corner.

Ludlow capped her fine performance three minutes into stoppage time with an 18-yard volley to give Akers' side their fourth.

The Arsenal Ladies manager said afterwards, "Tonight was an excellent way to start the season. I'm very pleased especially because it was against Charlton and you expect a tight game with them, but I felt it was a fair reflection.

"Jayne Ludlow made a big difference, her enthusiasm for the game showed through and when she plays like that anything could happen."

The Welsh captain remained modest after such a performance. "I'm enjoying my football at the moment and have had a good pre-season", she said.

"The girls played to my strengths tonight and I'm glad I made the most of the opportunities."


Ciara Grant celebrates her goal

Ciara Grant celebrates her goal

Community Shield winners!

Community Shield winners!

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4 Aug 2005