Reading FC Women
Wed 31 May 2017
Concessions : £3
Mandy Van Den Berg: ‘We go to Arsenal full of confidence’
The Royals take on Arsenal Ladies at The Hive this Wednesday!
Arsenal bid to maintain their unbeaten record in the FA Women’s Super League 1 Springs Series – and keep their title bid on track – when they welcome Reading to The Hive on Wednesday night. The Gunners have not tasted defeat in any of their first six Spring Series fixtures and with just two more matches to play, they yet go the whole campaign without a loss. Reading are in London on Wednesday and they’ll be bidding to sour Arsenal’s mood as they attempt to stretch their own unbeaten run to three games.
Arsenal have claimed two vital victories in their last two outings. They condemned Manchester City to their first Spring Series defeat on Sunday, Jordan Nobbs grabbing the decisive goal, and before that, they beat SSE Women’s FA Cup finalists Birmingham City 4-2. The Royals, meanwhile, were in action against Birmingham on Sunday and they recovered from falling behind in the first minute, and having a player sent off, to claim a respectable 1-1 draw. They beat Yeovil Town 1-0 in the match leading up to last weekend’s stalemate at Adams Park.
The Gunners and Reading met three times in the 2016 FA WSL season, with the last time they faced off coming in the Continental Tyres Cup in July. Arsenal progressed courtesy of a 3-1 victory, with Fara Williams scoring a brace to add to a Vicky Losada effort, Emma Follis grabbing the Royals’ consolation effort. Match-winner in Arsenal’s last outing with a stunning 40-yard free-kick, England vice-captain Jordan Nobbs now has two goals in three games, having also notched in her team’s 2-2 draw with Chelsea on May 17. The 24-year-old will be key to the Gunners’ hopes of continuing their fine form against Reading.
Reading defender Mandy van den Berg said “I think, in this league, there are almost always tough games. If you look at Birmingham and then Arsenal; they are two really strong sides. They will be a really tough opponent and it will be a really tough game but we will recover from the Birmingham one, and go to Arsenal full of confidence. We’ve learnt some really good lessons during the Spring Series so far. All this stuff we can use for going into the winter league after the Euros, so that is great.”
Arsenal goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal said:. “Wednesday’s game is just as important as the Manchester City one – that’s what we need to understand; it’s every single game [that we need to perform at a high level]. “We’re growing and working hard on the pitch as a team. “It’s going to be a different game, but against a great team. Reading have played well in their recent games. It’s going to be a tough game again, albeit a different one. “We know how we want to play, and we’ll be making a plan [to contain Reading’s attacking system] and will put our heads together”.
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