Beth Mead's Arsenal bounce back with Aston Villa victory
Beth Mead’s Arsenal returned to winning ways in the Women’s Super League with a vital 4-0 victory over Aston Villa on Sunday.
The Gunners came into the game on the back of consecutive league defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea - but this time around faced a different kind of challenge and delivered a controlled performance with four goals from four different players.
It wasn’t all plain sailing, though, as Villa proved to be a frustrating outfit throughout the first half, sitting deep and rarely leaving space in behind.
Mead created a half-chance early on, firing wide from 20 yards, before failing to take advantage of a free-kick in a dangerous position.
Vivianne Miedema was then denied twice in quick succession from close range, concluding the first-half’s action.
But Arsenal made their dominance count after the restart, upping their intensity and breaking the deadlock through Miedema, who made no mistake in converting Mead’s inviting delivery from the right.
Shortly after, Jordan Nobbs, who returned to the Arsenal starting XI as captain, doubled their advantage with an instinctive finish, to slot home the rebound after Miedema’s initial effort was kept out.
Katie McCabe then went on to make it three with the pick of the bunch, taking aim from 25 yards and finding the top left corner with an unstoppable strike.
By this stage, Arsenal were in cruise control, zipping the ball around Villa’s defence with ease - and with just minutes remaining, they made it four as substitute Lisa Evans climbed high inside the area to head home McCabe’s delivery.
Up next, it’s another trip to the Midlands as Arsenal face Birmingham on Sunday, March 7 at Damson Park.