Tobin Heath says it felt 'very special' to score first Arsenal goal

Arsenal head coach Jonas Eidevall greets Kim Little after the final whistle during the Women's UEFA

Arsenal head coach Jonas Eidevall greets Kim Little after the final whistle during the Women's UEFA Champions League group C match at Meadow Park - Credit: PA

Tobin Heath said it felt "very special" to score her first Arsenal goal in the 4-0 Champions League win over Hoffenheim on Thursday.

Kim Little, Heath, Vivianne Miedema and Leah Williamson got on the scoresheet as the Gunners kickstarted their Champions League campaign.

Heath said: “It felt really special, especially with the whole team bouncing back and scoring four goals.

"It was a good response to the Barcelona game, we showed a lot of character and focus.

"It was an important goal too – the second goal just before half time to give us a little bit of space, because Hoffenheim are so direct and aggressive that they can catch you at any moment.

"It was a great team goal too – a great cross and a quality header down from Vivianne Miedema. It was great quality all around."

On her partnership with Katie McCabe on the left she said: “Katie’s quality is really apparent in defence and attack and with the personality she has it’s been really easy playing with her.

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"She always gives me that support from behind and we’re constantly talking during the game about changing our positions to solve problems.

"As a footballer she has been a really interesting and fun player to work with. She’s had some quality moments that we’ve really enjoyed in the last couple of games too."

Heath said Miedema's "quality speaks for itself".

"To be able to play on the same pitch is amazing," she said. "It’s one of the key reasons I came to Arsenal – for the quality players. She is obviously a big piece of the puzzle here.”

Heath has settled in well in north London and on life with the WSL leaders, she said: “It’s exactly what I wanted, from the football perspective the quality of the players here is amazing. It’s been fun and easy and I think Jonas is a coach who is going to take this club to the next level.

"You can already tell in games and training and they are ambitious to take the next step, with each game we learn and grow and learn about ourselves.

"There is nothing better than this competition. Hoffenheim play such unique football for example, it’s something you wouldn’t really see anywhere else and that’s the really fun thing about this competition.”

Jonas Eidevall was asked about there being a Champions League group stage and said: “I still think more teams from the strongest nations should have been included to make it even more competitive. But the only complaint that I have is that it should have been done much, much earlier, five or six years ago. It’s obvious that this was the right thing to do.”

Heath scored the second goal of the game, just before half-time, and Eidevall said: “It’s really important against a team like Hoffenheim because it creates a bit of a margin. It meant we could be a bit calmer and more composed and that really suited us.

"I think it was our strongest game this season so far, to have a passing game in our own half and their half that was the best we have done this so far this season.

"We had very aggressive counter pressing too. I’m very pleased with the performance”.

On dealing with Hoffenheim’s high press, he said: “We were very skilled at how we played when we won the ball. We found diagonal passes and central passes.

"When you see some of the counterattacks, we had so much pace and we were able to go from front to back very well a couple of times in each half.

"That also creates a bit of belief that even when you are under pressure, we know we can still threaten if we win the ball back. It was very nice to see.”

A number of the Arsenal squad will now head off on international duty as the Women's Super League has a break from action.

The Gunners returned to action on October, 31 when they face Brighton & Hove Albion in the FA Cup semi-final.

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