WSL: Arsenal ready for Manchester City trip
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Arsenal claimed a dramatic 3-2 win over Birmingham on the opening weekend of the FA Women’s Super League season and visit fellow heavyweights Manchester City on Saturday.
Defending champions City will be eyeing a second title in a row but the Gunners will be confident of victory having triumphed on their last visit to the Academy Stadium.
City made light work of opening day opponents Yeovil Town, winning 4-0 at Huish Park thanks to goals from Jane Ross, Jill Scott, Izzy Christiansen and Georgia Stanway.
But it was far from straightforward for the Gunners as they required a dramatic late turnaround to defeat Birmingham, who looked all set to take the three points after an Ellen White brace either side of Jodie Taylor’s strike.
But five minutes from time the hosts, who had Louise Quinn sent off, levelled courtesy of Lisa Evans and a late penalty from Taylor to seal a thrilling victory.
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City will be gunning for revenge this weekend after suffering their first WSL defeat in more than two years at the hands of Arsenal.
Jordan Nobbs’ superb second-half free-kick was enough to separate to the two sides as Arsenal got the better of their hosts.
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This contest has tended to favour the away side with City defeating Arsenal 1-0 when the sides last met in the FA WSL 1 in September 2016.
Jane Ross’ deflected goal from a Steph Houghton set-piece was enough to edge past the Gunners at Meadow Park and she lashed in 13 goals in 23 matches in the last Women’s Super League.
The sharp-shooter spearheaded City’s successful 2016 league triumph and also netted two goals during the Spring Series and having already got off the mark this season, Ross will be eyeing another this weekend.
Arsenal manager Pedro Martinez Losa said: “It will be a very difficult game against Manchester City. I think we started well, we got the three points and from that we always feel comfortable playing on a good pitch like Man City have.
“We will be prepared, they will be prepared and we played against them in pre-season, so it will probably be a very different story. I am looking forward to a great game and a performance like last season.
“We have been managing Jodie to get her fit and in the best mental and physical state as possible for the future and we were very happy that she performed so well in the Euros and hopefully she can do it this season.
“At the moment she’s already got two goals and she could have scored a couple more, which is great news for us. I have difficult decisions to make in terms of having a lot of options and a lot of players with quality.”
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