By Oliver Yew at Meadow Park
Arsenal Ladies produced a dominant display against Lincoln to close the gap on Birmingham at the top of the FA Women's Super League.
- Fahey 61
- Chapman 81
- Little Goal! Goal!
- Carter Goal!
- Fleeting 65 Goal!
- White 65
- White 61
- Nobbs 81
- Rachel Daly
- Harris Yellow Card
- Allen 74
- Taylor 64
- Horwood 74
- Barker 64
Laura Harvey's side got back to winning ways with a 4-0 demolition of the lady Imps at Meadow Park to pull within two points of the league leaders.
Straight from the first whistle Arsenal looked to put early pressure on the visitors. Rachel Yankey put Niamh Fahey into space down the left but her high ball into the box was well claimed by goalkeeper Nicola Hobbs.
Lincoln had no answer to the home side's fast start and the ball kept coming back at them with Yankey dribbling her way into the heart of the Lady Imps' defence only for Casey Stoney's tackle to fall at the feet of Carter. The winger cut inside but fired her shot high over the bar.
The Arsenal pressure finally told on 21 minutes when Julie Fleeting bundled the ball over the line from Kim Little's corner to give the home side a deserved advantage.
Lincoln were lucky not to go further behind as the lively Carter and Little both went close with long-range efforts. Rod Wilson's side then had Hobbs to thank as she pulled off an excellent save to deny Ludlow's header from close range.
Arsenal had Lincoln on the back foot and the visitors' only chance came just before the break when Remi Allen fired a long-range effort over Emma Byrne's goal.
But Arsenal doubled their advantage just before the break when Little danced round Mel Sutcliffe and fired a low shot into bottom corner.
It was about to get even better for Harvey's side when England youth International Carter, following her brace against Chelsea, produced yet another stunning strike to make it 3-0.
The 18-year-old connected with a sensational left-foot volley from the edge of the box straight into the top corner, giving a stunned Hobbs no chance in the Lincoln goal.
After the break the Gunners continued in much the same fashion as the first half with Yankey and Carter testing the Lincoln back-line with a barrage of crosses into the box.
Lincoln were soon under pressure again as Megan Harris picked up a yellow card for a foul on the edge of the box on Yankey. The resulting free-kick was well worked by the Gunners with the ball landing at the feet of Ludlow, whose shot just crept over the bar.
Just after the hour-mark Harvey started to ring the changes - bringing on Faye White and Ellen White - and despite Harris having Lincoln's first shot on target the visitors could not get any real foothold in the game.
The Gunners continued to attack and their dominance paid off when Little produced a stunning strike from the edge of the box past a helpless Hobbs to grab her side's fourth and her second.
It rounded of a superb night for Harvey's side and leaves them well placed going into Sunday's crunch showdown with League leaders Birmingham.Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 4 Aug 2011