Arsenal Women hit Bristol City rivals for six of the best to end WSL season on a high
PUBLISHED: 10:00 21 May 2018
PA Wire/PA Images
Arsenal Women ran riot in their last game of the FA Women's Super League 1 season, racing into a five-goal lead at the break before comprehensively beating Bristol City by a 6-1 margin.
But it wasn’t enough to clinch a place in next season’s UEFA Women’s Champions League as Manchester City’s win over Everton meant the Gunners finished third.
Danielle van de Donk scored in each half while Kim Little converted a penalty with Leah Williamson, Beth Mead and Katie McCabe all on target before half-time.
Chloe Arthur scored a consolation for Bristol City who finished in eighth.
Arsenal went close on 17 minutes as Dominique Janssen’s free kick was palmed away by keeper Sophie Baggaley, who then tipped Louise Quinn’s header from the corner against the bar.
But the floodgates were opened four minutes later when Van De Donk was presented with a simple header from a Jordan Nobbs corner kick.
The visitors increased their lead on 28 minutes from the penalty spot, Little firing low to Baggaley’s right after Danielle Carter had been brought down by Danique Kerkdijk.
And a third arrived two minutes later, Williamson getting the final touch in a goalmouth scramble following a corner.
Mead smashed home a right-footed 30-yarder seven minutes before the break to make it 4-0 and the fifth arrived just before the interval when substitute McCabe showed strength inside the box to hold off her marker to fire home.
Bristol began to give a better account of themselves after the break and found the net after 66 minutes when Arthur took advantage of rare defensive slackness from the visitors to chip the ball over Anna Moorhouse.
Lauren Hemp then sent an angled shot over the top, but the five-goal margin was restored in the 71st minute when Van De Donk bagged her second of the game, nodding home at the far post from Little’s cross.
Arsenal’s Mead said: “It was a nice result to finish with and we played some good football and scored some good goals.
“But we killed ourselves earlier in the season when we were not consistent enough. A Champions League place was out of our hand and although we did what we could, it wasn’t enough in the end.
“Hopefully we can be more consistent next season and give the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City a run for their money.”
To buy tickets to an FA Women’s Super League match near you see fawsl.com/tickets.