Arsenal Women 4-0 Brighton: Dominant Gunners show class to continue unbeaten start
PUBLISHED: 14:27 29 September 2019 | UPDATED: 14:27 29 September 2019
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Arsenal Women continued their unbeaten start to FA Women's Super League season with a 4-0 win over Brighton at Meadow Park on Sunday afternoon, putting in a performance that showed exactly why they are defending champions.
Kim Little opened the scoring with nine minutes played as she latched onto Vivianne Miedema's pass before tucking home.
Miedema then smashed home on 39 minutes after a fast-flowing move to double the lead, before turning provider once again to allow Danielle van de Donk to make it 3-0 with 56 minutes on the clock.
Jordan Nobbs added a fourth with 20 minutes to play as she volleyed home to round off the scoring.
Joe Montemurro made two changes from the side that beat Fiorentina in the Champions League on Thursday night, with Nobbs and Leonie Maier taking the place of Jill Roord and Beth Mead.
The visitors set up to contain and frustrate the Gunners, but it took just nine minutes for the reigning WSL champions to break them down.
Miedema dropped deep to pick up the ball from Jennifer Beattie, creating space for Little to run in behind the Brighton defence.
The Arsenal captain was fed through on goal, keeping her cool to tuck the ball past Megan Walsh and give the home side an early lead.
Despite seeing most of the ball in the first-half, the Gunners struggled to break down the away side's defence.
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Their next chance came on 25 minutes when Leah Williamson was left unmarked at a corner, but her free header dropped just the wrong side of the post.
The away side had their first chance on 35 minutes when Viktoria Schnaderbeck gave the ball away and allowed Kayleigh Green to break forward, but Pauline Peyraud-Magnin easily saved her effort from range.
Miedema was having a quiet afternoon in front of goal by her high standards, then suddenly, she sprung into life with 39 minutes gone to double Arsenal's lead.
From a short corner, Little found Nobbs on the edge of the area who cushioned a first-time pass through for the Dutch striker to smash a shot across Walsh and into the far corner.
Despite being relatively untroubled in the first-half, Peyraud-Magnin had to be alert just after the break to stop a dangerous Brighton attack, rushing off her line to save at the feet of Green.
As they did in the first 45 minutes, the Seagulls set up to contain the Gunners, but when they made a mistake at the back on 56 minutes Montemurro's team capitalised with ruthless efficiency.
Leonie Maier's pass deflected into Miedema's path who rolled away from her marker and feed Dutch compatriot van de Donk through on goal. Bearing down on goal, she got the ball out from under her feet to slot past Walsh and make it 3-0.
Miedema could have had her third assist of the afternoon when she played Nobbs through, but the midfielder could only fire straight at Walsh when one-on-one.
The England international would not be denied on 70 minutes though, as a clearance fell to her inside the area and she volleyed through the legs of the Brighton 'keeper to make it 4-0 to Arsenal.
It could have been five in the closing minutes when substitute Beth Mead hit the crossbar with a powerful effort, but the Gunners will be pleased with a fine afternoon's work at Meadow Park.
They face a tough away test in their next WSL game on October 13, when they travel to face fellow title contenders Chelsea.