Interview

The tactical switch that made all the difference

Joe Montemurro

We left it late but Danielle van de Donk's 89th-minute winner meant we left Leigh Sports Village with all three points.

We'd pushed and probed to try to find the breakthrough against Casey Stoney's well-drilled Manchester United side, and in the end it was our Dutch playmaker's strike - our 19th shot of the game - which made the difference.
 
So why did we struggle to break Manchester United down?
 
"It was just our decision making in the final third," Montemurro told Arsenal.com. "We were crossing balls that were never there to be crossed when we should have started again.
 
"They were so deep and I saw one clip where they had eight between the six-yard box and the edge of the area centrally. In those situations you need to keep recycling over and over again to drag them out of position and find the spaces - and we did that in the second half. That was the difference.
 
"We basically just told the players that they’ve got to get out of each other’s lines. We felt that the player on the ball was always playing along the lines of others. We needed to open up the passing lines to go beyond instead of just keeping it low.
 
"We also told our 10s who were playing in the pockets to go out a little bit so that we could go a little more centrally. That gave Viv the opportunity to come underneath and it allowed us to penetrate, so it was more positional adjustments, rather than a change in formation as such."