Arsenal boss Montemurro is delighted for Mead after she reached milestone in City win

Birmingham City's Rebecca Holloway (left) and Arsenal's Beth Mead battle for the ball during the FA Women's Super League matc...

Birmingham City's Rebecca Holloway (left) and Arsenal's Beth Mead battle for the ball during the FA Women's Super League match at Meadow Park, London. - Credit: PA

Joe Montemurro was delighted for Beth Mead as she reached 100 Arsenal appearances in Sunday’s 3-0 win over Birmingham City in the Women’s Super League.

Birmingham City's Jamie-Lee Napier (left) and Arsenal's Vivianne Miedema battle for the ball

Birmingham City's Jamie-Lee Napier (left) and Arsenal's Vivianne Miedema battle for the ball - Credit: PA

On her reaching her century milestone he said: “It’s fantastic for someone so young to hit 100 games for us, same for Leah Williamson reaching 150.

“It’s great to have players of that age really maturing. Beth has three or four great weapons, she’s very good at cutting inside, she’s very good at exploiting spaces in behind, her finishing and dead balls are very, very good.

“She’s got three or four ways of breaking deep blocks and breaking lines. Beth is a very good component for our team.”

Arsenal completely dominated the game but goalkeeper Lydia Williams made her WSL debut and on her performance he said: “Lydia is known for her commanding and vocal ways! It’s a big asset for us.

Arsenal's Jill Roord celebrates scoring her side's second goal of the game

Arsenal's Jill Roord celebrates scoring her side's second goal of the game - Credit: PA


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“A team that defends very deep is going to threaten you on the break because we’ve got a lot of the ball, that means you have to manage what happens without the ball and that’s where Lydia is perfect.

“We made sure that any chance they had to go forward was cut out and controlled.”

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All of Arsenal’s goals came in the second half from Caitlin Foord, Jill Roord and a penalty from Kim Little who also had one saved in the first half by Birmingham keeper Hannah Hampton on the first half.

“I said in the huddle at full-time that it was a very good character test for us, because we had a lot of very good opportunities in the first half but you’ve got to put the ball in the back of the net.

“But we continued playing our football and eventually found the gaps.

“I actually felt that the first two goals were more difficult chances than some of the ones we didn’t score.

“These games are really important for the whole package of the year and what we’re trying to achieve.”

On the changes made at the break Montemurro revealed: “They were very compact and we couldn’t play in between. What we did notice was that when we went out wide their full-backs or wide players were being exposed and their central players weren’t coming with them.

“We just felt one of our full-backs or a 10 could get into that space a little bit more and that was one of the main reasons we bought on Lisa Evans to move into that space between their full-back and centre-back and it worked well from that perspective.”

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