Liverpool 0-2 Arsenal: Miedema and Foord see the Gunners over the line against Liverpool

Having been comprehensively swept aside by Manchester City in their latest Barclays Women’s Super League encounter, Liverpool manager Matt Beard made a significant number of changes to his starting eleven – most notably with Rachael Laws replacing Teagan Micah in goal. Meanwhile, in stark contrast, Arsenal named an unchanging line-up following their 2-1 victory over Everton that same weekend.

LIV: Laws; Fisk, Bonner, Fahey; van de Sanden, Lundgaard, Nagano, Matthews; Holland, Daniëls, Lawley

ARS: Zinsberger; Fox, Ilestedt, Wubben-Moy, McCabe; Pelova, Wälti; Mead, Miedema, Foord; Russo

Arsenal had scored 37 goals in their previous 12 head-to-head meetings with Liverpool, and were unsurprisingly dominant within the opening quarter-hour after amassing nearly 80% of possession. The visitors’ early dominance almost paid-dividends not long after as Katie McCabe’s marauding burst down the pitch, resulting in her beating Rachael Laws but not the post, before Victoria Pelova’s effort from distance landed comfortably in the arms of Liverpool’s goalkeeper.

Frustratingly for Jonas Eideval’s goal-hungry side – notably on his 100th appearance as Arsenal manager – the Gunners were forced to trudge down the Prenton Park tunnel for the half time interval with nothing yet to show for their determined endeavours in front of goal.

On the losing side in only two of their 11 Barclays Women’s Super League matches this season, Arsenal eventually reaped their attacking rewards on the stroke of the hour-mark as Vivianne Miedema needed only two advancing touches on the ball before unleashing a thunderous strike beyond Laws – despite the best efforts of the Liverpool goalkeeper to keep the rocket out.

Embed from Getty Images

Ruthlessly, it only took the visitors nine more minutes to secure their deserved victory as Alessia Russo put it on a plate for Caitlin Foord to make no mistake from close range.

Stina Blackstenius should have made it 3-0 with time elapsing, but Laws was already aware of the danger as she instinctively raced out to deny the second-half substitute entering double goalscoring figures across all competitions this season.

A relative stroll at Prenton Park – with Manuela Zinsberger’s only save in the match coming via Mia Enderby’s effort in the 90th minute – marks a landmark achievement for Arsenal as they become the first-ever side to reach 500 points in the WSL following its inception in March 2010.

Meanwhile, Liverpool’s second successive defeat leaves Matt Beard’s side in fifth position in the standings – 10 points behind the Gunners, who currently reside in the final UEFA Women’s Champions League qualifying position.