Reflecting on an unforgettable victory at Emirates Stadium on Wednesday evening, Jonas Eidevall spoke of his gratitude and amazement for our club’s supporters.
21,307 supporters packed out Emirates Stadium - a record Women’s Champions League attendance at an English ground - as our Gunners defeated Bayern Munich and progressed to the semi-finals for the first time in a decade.
"I think it's an amazing atmosphere and moment every time we can go out and play in front of big crowds and especially with our Arsenal supporters. So we're grateful for it. And it's a massive part of the strong performance that we had against Bayern Munich."
"We are all filled with dreams,” he continued. “I think you're allowed to have dreams when you're playing in a semi-final because you're not very far away from playing a final. We also have dreams about the atmosphere that we can create here in the semi-final at Emirates Stadium.”
The afternoon after our quarter-final win, ticket sales had already reached a staggering 5,000. That figure has since doubled and continues to rise as our supporters prepare for a massive clash in the Champions League semi-final against Wolfsburg.
Tickets for the May 1 clash are available to buy now, with kick-off to be confirmed shortly.
"What if we can make it a sellout game? What if this can be the greatest atmosphere that we've ever played for this season? I mean, I think it's possible. It's a dream that can become a possibility. So continue to buy tickets and be part of something special."
It wasn’t only Eidevall who was invigorated by Wednesday evening. Mikel Arteta and Edu Gaspar were in attendance to witness our Gunners’ spectacular display. When asked about the match in his pre-Leeds press conference, Arteta had this to say:
“It was beautiful, it was great to have the experience to live it there with the crowd that we had in the game. Especially the way they played in the first half - it was a real joy to watch.
“[Reaching the Champions League semi-finals] is a big achievement. It hasn't happened for many, many years at the club and we have to catch them up!
“This is the beauty of getting things inside the club that are inspiring for each other and can make us closer and better.”
As for Frida Maanum’s exquisite goal to level the tie on aggregate and change the game, Arteta was suitably impressed.
“Beautiful. The moment the ball left her feet, we knew it was going in. It is just a beautiful finish.
As is quickly becoming routine for our Gunners, we now switch our focus back to the Women’s Super League with a huge test awaiting us at Meadow Park at the weekend.
Manchester City travel to Borehamwood to face us on Sunday but going from 20,000 supporters to 3,000 won’t change our approach to big matches.
"We're used it. The players are used to it, it's. That’s also a way where you need to show adaptability. It's not always easy, but they're used to it.
“They go to Wembley in front of 90,000 and then they go back and they play preseason in front of almost no one. So whatever the crowd, you still need to be 100% in what you do."
Yesterday evening, Emma Hayes’ Chelsea side knocked out defending champions Lyon to join us in the Champions League final four. This marks the first time two English sides have been in the semi-finals for 5 years.
"For once, I got to watch both Champions League games just for pure entertainment aand I wasn't disappointed!” said Eidevall. “It was a game that had a lot. Congratulations to Chelsea: I think it's a huge achievement for English women's club football to have two teams in the top four in Europe.
“That’s not only something that Arsenal and Chelsea should be proud of, but also the WSL and the FA because there are a lot of people who have worked extremely hard over many years to help things like this become a reality."
As attendances, atmosphere and energy in women’s football all over the world continues to sky-rocket, Eidevall believes that the momentum isn’t stopping any time soon.
"It's a great movement. Like I said after the game, I really feel that history is changing here in front of our eyes. That’s special. I think and hope that this is just the beginning of something really, really big."
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