Pre-Match Report

WSL: Arsenal v Chelsea - Preview

Casey Stoney
Casey Stoney in action during the FA Cup final

By Connor Armstrong

Casey Stoney admits that this weekend’s crunch clash with Chelsea will be a “season-defining” encounter for Arsenal Ladies.
Victory over Notts County last weekend saw Arsenal move up to third in the Women’s Super League table, closing the gap on the second-placed Blues to just five points.
The Gunners now head to Wheatsheaf Park this Sunday as they look to continue a seven-game unbeaten run.
Stoney spent four years in Chelsea colours, taking on the role of player-manager during the 2009 season, but is keen to put one over her former employers.

"We know we’ve got a very hard task ahead of us and we know we’ve dropped a lot of points but it’s not undoable"

Casey Stoney

“It’s Chelsea so it’s a big game,” Stoney told “It’s three points we could really do with so it’s a big, big week for us and we’ve got to make sure we get it right.
“These are the season defining games. We know we’ve got a very hard task ahead of us and we know we’ve dropped a lot of points but it’s not undoable.
“We were disappointed against Birmingham last week when we dropped points when we could’ve gained ground, it’s all about building momentum but it’s also about one game at a time.”
Arsenal beat the Blues when the two teams last met at Wembley in May’s FA Cup final, with Pedro Martinez Losa’s side running out 1-0 winners, and Stoney is hoping the Gunners’ seven-day break will help them produce a repeat performance this weekend.
“It’s nice to not have three games in a week so we can be fresh, we can be ready and we can prepare and plan,” the England defender said.
“The manager can make sure he’s got his game plan in place and we’ll make sure that we’re ready to go on Sunday so that we can put in a performance like we did in the cup final.”
For live updates from Sunday's meeting at Wheatsheaf Park, follow @ArsenalLadies on Twitter and follow the #ALFC hashtag, with coverage starting from 2:55pm (UK time).

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