Plenty is at stake as we look ahead to this weekend’s Women’s Super League fixture against bottom-of-the-table Leicester City.
Our Gunners head to the King Power Stadium in second place in the league, a game in hand over Chelsea but narrowly trailing Manchester United on goal difference. Victory on Sunday would be our fourteenth straight win in the league, breaking our own record that was set last weekend.
The Foxes' slow start
It's been a disappointing start to the season for this weekend's opponents, who currently sit in last place and have yet to record a win or draw this season. However, with the exception of a 4-0 loss away to Man City, the Foxes have only lost narrowly to their league opponents on each occasion.
Their first victory of the campaign looked certain against Reading last Sunday and Natasha Flint’s goal would have been enough for Leicester, had it not been for some injury-time heroics from Reading’s Rachel Rowe.
That meant the end of the road for Lydia Bedford, who lasted less than a year in the managerial spot. She was swiftly replaced by Leicester City's Director of Football, Willie Kirk, who has not managed a side since he left his coaching position at Everton in 2021. This fresh appointment could mean our Gunners face a changed Leicester side on Sunday.
Last time around
In Leicester’s debut season in the WSL last year, we recorded two comfortable victories over the Foxes, winning 4-0 at home and 5-0 at the King Power Stadium. We registered a combined 55 shots in those two games, with only Chelsea vs Reading (58) and Man Utd vs Leicester (56) having more against an opponent in 2021-22.
Goals from Beth Mead and Tobin Heath, plus a brace from Vivianne Miedema were the difference-makers during our most recent encounter in April.
The boss' take on Leicester
Eidevall on Leicester: "What I have seen from Leicester before was a very, very organised and structured team who are very hard working. When we look at underlying numbers, it's one of the best defensive teams in the whole league.
"We've seen that in the recent games against Manchester United and Reading that they are a very hard team to break down. So we're prepared to have to be very good on the ball to be able to create enough scoring opportunities to win." - read every word of Eidevall's pre-match presser
After our skipper was stretchered off in the first half against West Ham, it has been confirmed that Kim Little will not be in the squad to face the Foxes. Our skipper’s injury is confined to her knee but Eidevall stated in his pre-match press conference that the medical staff had already seen good progress.
There continues to be no set timeline for the return of our centre-back pairing, Leah Williamson and Rafaelle Souza. Vivianne Miedema has also been granted a leave of absence by the club and is due to return after the November international break.
How to watch
We kick off at the King Power Stadium at 2pm UK time on Sunday. The match is free to view on the BBC Red Button and iPlayer.
Facts and stats
- Since her WSL debut in January, only three players have more WSL goals than Stina Blackstenius (9), with our Swedish striker scoring with nine of her 13 shots on target (69%). Of all players to attempt at least 10 shots on target in WSL history, Blackstenius has the highest scoring rate
- Leicester City have picked up one point in 13 league games, drawing once, losing twelve times, and conceding 38 times
- For a second consecutive season, Leicester City have lost their opening six WSL matches, which is only the sixth time it has happened in the WSL. Doncaster Rovers Belles did so in 2016, as did Yeovil Town in the 2017 Spring Series, 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons.