Arsenal Women produced a strong all-round display to beat Brighton at Broadfield Stadium. Stina Blackstenius gave the Gunners the lead early on before well-worked goals from Caitlin Foord and Frida Maanum late on.
Beth Mead made her first WSL start since returning from injury, starting in a frontline that included Caitlin Foord, Stina Blackstenius and Alessia Russo.
Lia Walti and Laia Codina returned to the bench.
Manu Zinsberger 7/10
Claimed crosses well and made some important stops at the back end of the first half. Her, and Arsenal’s, first clean sheet of the season.
Katie McCabe 7.5/10
Back on the left side of Arsenal’s defence, fighting for every tackle or loose ball. Largely kept England international Katie Robinson quiet.
Amanda Ilestedt 8/10
Composed at the back and flawless with her head. Got touch-tight to the Brighton strikers and didn’t let them through.
Really impressed by Amanda Ilestedt at the back this afternoon- dominant in the air, sticking tight to the Brighton forwards and winning her duels ??— Freddie Cardy (@CardyFreddie) November 19, 2023
Lotte Wubben-Moy 8/10
Dominant in the air- only lapse of concentration saw Terland get the wrong side of her and unleash a shot that was saved. Her passing out from the back was exemplary.
Noelle Maritz 7/10
Helped accommodate Mead’s runs down the right wing.
Victoria Pelova 8/10
A tricky customer for Brighton’s defence to deal with. Crucial in the turnover when Arsenal would win the ball back on the edge of their box, with her remarkable ability to keep it stuck to her feet.
Kyra Cooney-Cross 7.5/10
Kept her place in the side after impressing against Leicester and made sure that Arsenal did not miss midfield mainstays Little and Walti- the latter replaced Cooney-Cross with ten minutes left.
Beth Mead 7.5/10
Ran in behind the Brighton defence with ease on the right wing, continuing to return to her long-awaited form. Almost found her goal with a first time effort that flew just wide of the top corner.
Caitlin Foord 7/10
Took a little too long on the ball in the final third after getting into good position, but was given enough time by the Brighton defenders to bend a low effort into the bottom corner to double Arsenal’s lead. Another excellent finish from the Aussie.
Alessia Russo 8/10
Started in the number ten role, in behind Blackstenius, and dropped deep consistently when Arsenal needed to defend as well as pressing tirelessly upfront. Made a fantastic tackle to deny Robinson a goal in the second half.
Stina Blackstenius 7.5/10
Miscued her initial shot but found the top corner with her second effort to put Arsenal in front. Like Russo, worked tenaciously to close defenders down.
Steph Catley (Sub, 65’) 6.5/10
Came on for Katie McCabe and was a calm presence at left-back to close out the game.
Cloe Lacasse (Sub, 65’) 7.5/10
One of the shrewdest summer signings made in the WSL- a real handful for defenders. Was very unselfish to lay the ball off for Maanum in the final moments.
Frida Maanum (Sub, 65’) 5/10
Played in behind Russo to allow the England star to move upfront, impacting the game effectively. Took her goal well in added time.
Goal! Brighton 0-3 Arsenal- Russo crosses from the left and Lacasse is unselfish, laying the ball off to Maanum who buries it into the bottom corner! pic.twitter.com/36KWTnbxAr— Freddie Cardy (@CardyFreddie) November 19, 2023
Lia Walti (Sub, 80’)
Kathrine Kuhl (Sub, 86’)
Subs not used: Naomi Williams, Lina Hurtig, Laia Codina.