Arsenal faced Brighton Hove and Albion yesterday, thrashing the Seagulls 5-0 in front of a sold-out Meadow Park.

Going into the match, Brighton faced an uphill battle with Arsenal holding an aggregate score of 39-2 against them and searching for their tenth win in a row at home.

In regards to Arsenal’s team news, Jonas Eidevall announced that defender, Lotte Wubben-Moy, would be out on injury alongside other more long-term absentees like Amanda Ilestedt and Lina Hurtig.

For Brighton, Mikey Harris reported that there were no new injuries, but despite his doubts about Maisie Symonds’ availability, she made it into the squad after feeling unwell during the week.

First half

From the whistle, Arsenal posed a huge threat, with Alessia Russo making runs high up the pitch, but the Brighton defence held strong.

They began to open up in the 12th minute, allowing Caitlin Foord to pick her way through the backline and whip the ball just over the bar after Sophie Baggaley gave the ball away.

Just five minutes after the first cracks in the Brighton defence were beginning to show, Russo scored the opener.

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It came from a direct pass from Emily Fox who had ran the ball into the box for Russo to finish in an instinctive strike.

Brighton were quick to retaliate, with two attempts coming from Elisabeth Terland, her second rattling the crossbar but neither finding the net.

Russo bagged a brace in the 24th minute after a loose touch from Maria Thorisdóttir left her to hit the ball into the back of the net from six yards.

Second half

In the second half, Steph Catley drew a foul in the penalty area, leaving captain Kim Little to take the kick, but it hit the woodwork.

Within two minutes of coming on the pitch Vivianne Miedema scored on her first touch, assisted by Beth Mead who threaded the ball through Brighton’s backline to be tapped in by the Dutch striker, making it 3-0.

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In the 67th minute Miedema went for goal again, but her shot was deflected, winning Arsenal a corner which was taken by Mead.

Laia Codina made contact and managed to header the ball into the goal, but in a failed attempt to keep the ball from the back of the net, Jorelyn Carabalí claimed the goal as her own.

Maisie Symonds sent a long ball forward, leaving it for Veatriki Sarri to strike but Sabrina D’Angelo’s outstretched leg provided the necessary deflection to keep the clean sheet.

In her final game for Arsenal, Miedema found two goal involvements, the second coming in the form of an assist to Frida Maanum’s strike which made it 5-0.

In the 88th minute Miedema chipped the ball ahead of Maanum, allowing her to make the run before whipping the ball past Baggaley, who was off of her line, and into the back of the net.

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During the eight minutes of added time, Brighton tried for a consolation goal, but D’Angelo claimed it, leaving the game at 5-0.

Post match

The final match of the season left Arsenal in third place, five points behind second place Manchester City, and Brighton were left in ninth.

It was a special game for Arsenal fans who bid farewell to three of their players who’s contracts had expired at the end of the season.


Featured image courtesy of Bella Pinn.

By Abby Rampling-Mott

Trainee multimedia journalist based in Preston. Abby is also a co-host on the LG Women's Football podcast.