By Lloyd Webb at Adams Park
We celebrated a record fifth FA WSL Continental Cup title with Vivianne Miedema’s first-half strike proving the difference in a hard-fought 1-0 victory at Adams Park.
With both sides limited to few goalscoring opportunities, the Netherlands striker’s clinical finish was enough to edge out our opponents to secure the first title of Joe Montemurro’s tenure in north London.
The game got off to a slow start until Dominique Janssen sparked it into life with a stunning 30-yard drive which had the beating of an outstretched Ellie Roebuck, but left the crossbar rattling.
Former Gunner Steph Houghton was next to try her luck from outside the box with a dangerous free-kick, but Sari Van Veenendaal was able to watch her strike float harmlessly over the bar.
But we made our next chance count. Miedema latched onto Janssen’s deep cross in the box, held off her marker forward and lashed a measured finish into the bottom corner.
Nikita Parris’ off-target shot was the closest Nick Cushing’s side would later come to equalising in a physical first half, as we took our slender lead into the break.
After the restart Janssen left many of our fans thinking we had doubled our lead, but her thunderous set-piece crept inches wide of the post.
Chasing an equaliser and looking to break forward, Manchester City attempted to stamp their authority on proceedings. Their labour almost paid off when a dangerous cross into the box was met by Jill Scott, but fortunately Sari van Veenendaal was equal to the England midfielder’s header.
Our goalkeeper was called into action again shortly after as Jane Ross managed to find space in the box with some tidy footwork, and only a smart stop at the near post denied the Scottish striker.
Fresh legs in the form of Esme Morgan threatened to equalise late on with efforts at goal, but we held on to reclaim the Continental Cup for the first time since 2015.
WHAT IT MEANS
Our fifth Continental Cup makes us the most successful side in the competition having last won the trophy three years ago.
The party will be short-lived at London Colney as Montemurro prepares his side for an FA Cup fifth-round clash with London rivals Charlton Athletic on Sunday.
Copyright 2019 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.