International round up: Williamson at the double

Leah Williamson celebrates scoring against Belgium

Several of our Gunners returned from the international break with silverware in tow, following successful tournaments with their national sides.

Leah Williamson once again captained England to trophy glory, as the Lionesses won the Arnold Clark Cup for the second year running. The skipper bagged a brace in the final game against Belgium, popping up with a header and a drilled strike in the 6-1 win.

Lotte Wubben-Moy also featured against the Red Devils and made some key interventions at the back during the Lionesses’ 2-1 victory over Italy. Sarina Wiegman’s side remains unbeaten in 29 matches - fearsome form ahead of this summer’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Over in Australia, Steph Catley and Caitlin Foord’s Matildas strode to three victories to win the Cup of Nations. Catley played all three full games for Australia, with Foord providing goals against Spain and Jamaica - her long-range effort against the latter being the pick of the bunch.

In the SheBelieves Cup, despite an opening win over Japan, Rafaelle Souza’s Brazil could not replicate this result against Canada and the United States. Our centre-back played the entire game against Japan, featured as a second-half substitute against Canada and captained the side in a narrow loss to the USWNT - the eventual tournament winners. 

For Canada, Sabrina D’Angelo got her first start in the tournament against Japan but our goalkeeper sustained a contact injury in the build-up to a goal and was subbed off after 30 minutes.

The points were shared as Austria and the Netherlands met for two back-to-back friendlies. Manuela Zinsberger and Laura Wienroither’s side triumphed 2-1 over the Dutch in the first game, with Victoria Pelova featuring throughout for the Netherlands. Pelova played another full 90 minutes in the following meeting as the Dutch proceeded to get revenge in a 4-0 win. Neither Zinsberger nor Wienroither made an appearance in the second clash. 

In Sweden's 4-1 friendly win over China, Stina Blackstenius played for over an hour and set up two goals for teammate Madelen Janogy. During their follow-up match with Euro 2022 finalists Germany, Blackstenius played nearly the entire game for Sweden but with nothing between the two sides, it ended goalless. 

Noelle Maritz was awarded her 100th cap for Switzerland during their double-headed friendly with Poland. Both matches ended in a draw, with Lia Walti donning the captain’s armband.

Frida Maanum and Norway faced France and Kathrine Kuhl's Danish side in the Tournoi de France. Maanum featured in every game, including 90 minutes in the goalless draw with hosts France and an hour-long spell against Uruguay. Kuhl also started all three clashes for Denmark, which saw them pick up wins over Norway and Uruguay and fall to a narrow 1-0 loss against France. 

Katie McCabe’s Republic of Ireland played a behind-closed-doors friendly against Germany and finished their international break with a 0-0 draw with China.

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