We maintained our perfect start to the season in dramatic style on Monday night, as Danielle van de Donk scored a last-gasp winner to secure a 1-0 victory over Manchester United.
This was our first ever meeting with the Red Devils in the WSL, and Joe Montemurro made just one change to the side that ran out 4-0 winners over Fiorentina last Thursday, with Jordan Nobbs making her first start since suffering an anterior cruciate ligament injury in November 2018.
United carved open the game’s first opportunity on a blistering counter as Jess Siggsworth picked out Ella Toone, who headed wide from inside the area.
Since Montemurro’s arrival in November 2017, there have only been a handful of games where we’ve failed to assert our dominance early on - and this was one of them, as we failed to register a shot on target in the opening 30 minutes.
Despite this, we still managed to create the first half’s most promising goalscoring opportunity, when Lisa Evans whipped the ball into Vivianne Miedema, whose powerful header was parried away by Mary Earps. Miedema latched on to the rebound and fired at goal once more, but Earps was on hand to produce another quick reaction save.
Montemurro switched to a fluid 4-4-2 after the restart with Nobbs joining Miedema in attack. This saw us take control of the game and carve open a number of promising chances, with Roord, Miedema and Little forcing Earps into three difficult saves in quick succession.
With less than 10 minutes to play Miedema shielded the ball inside the area and fired a dangerous snapshot towards the far corner, only to see it rattle the post and be cleared behind for a corner.
It looked as if the game was headed for a draw - but then came substitute van de Donk to pounce on a loose ball inside the area and fire home to deservedly secure all three points.
WHAT IT MEANS
Montemurro’s side must now prepare to face London City Lionesses on Sunday, September 22.
The game will take place at Dartford FC with kick-off at 2pm (UK time).
Copyright 2020 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.