Hello all and welcome to Lucas Rolph’s live coverage of the WSL North London Derby clash between Tottenham and league leaders Arsenal. Both teams are in fine form at the moment with the Gunners winning all of their games this season domestically and only conceding to Chelsea right at the start of the campaign. Tottenham have looked a completely different side to their former selves, playing six and winning four, only losing one. Though they have not been great in attack scoring only the eight goals, Arsenal have been immense, having scored 23 thus far.
North London Derbies have been dominated by the red side of the city but Rehanne Skinner’s side will be looking to turn this around today at this 1:30pm kick off. Jonas Eidevall’s Gunners are looking to get his maiden North London Derby win at The Hive. Arsenal beat Tottenham 5-1 in the FA Women’s Cup in September and will be looking to replicate this today. Vivianne Miedema is looking to end her three game goal drought in the WSL which is a long streak for her high standards, scoring 82 goals in 93 Arsenal games. With Chelsea facing Man City in this crazy title race weekend in the WSL, this is a must win game for Arsenal and Tottenham.
Game Starts – Tottenham vs Arsenal 0-0
Both teams pay respect to the memorial weekend and to the Black Lives Matter campaign by having a minute silence and taking the knee. A huge show of respect here today. Amy Fearn is the referee for the match today. 2896 attendants at The Hive today which is a record , great attendance for the WSL yet again.
1′ Big Chance: Katie McCabe drives down the line and is slipped in, putting a fast cross across the box, which Beth Mead connects with but forces a great save from Tinja-Riikka Korpela at her near post. Arsenal starting off bright within the first 40 seconds. 0-0
3′ Chance: Vivianne Miedema drags her shot wide of the Spurs keepers near post. Arsenal continue to mount on the pressure.
9′ Update: The game has started off very fast paced with both teams having a really high tempo on this Saturday afternoon. The crowd are loving it with the Arsenal fans definitely the more vocal after a better start here so far. Shouting “We’ve got McCabe, Katie McCabe, I just don’t think you understand!” The Arsenal fans showing their respect after her brilliant start to the season. 0-0
19′ Corner: Arsenal receive a corner after some great dribbling and skill from McCabe. This will be whipped in for the likes of Leah Williamson and Miedema. Nothing as a result of the corner. 0-0
21′ Big Chance: Miedema the main women for Arsenal, fires a low shot from outside the box with her left foot, it is hit thunderously but saved by Korpela the Finland international. Arsenal are being patient here as Tottenham have set up the low blocks, and the Gunners are slowly breaking them down with some neat passing. 0-0
26′ Foul: McCabe hits the deck just outside the area on the left flank. Ashleigh Neville fumes at the referee as she believes it wasn’t a foul. 0-0
27′ CROSSBAR AND THE POST! – From Beth Meads free kick 0-0
Beth Mead is known for her long range efforts, and from the tight angle of the free kick, whips a curler that Korpela tips slightly with her fingers resulting in the ball striking both the bar and the post. Arsenal are completely dominant now and are putting piles of pressure on the Spurs women. 0-0
37′ Big Chance: Miedema taunts the Spurs defence with some tricky footwork but fires a scuffed shot, resulting in no damage. The Spurs backline are shaken here after the Dutch international is playing with them. 0-0
42′ CROSSBAR Struck again! – McCabe looking to grab her fourth goal of the campaign
McCabe strikes a powerful left footed drive through the legs of the spurs full back Neville, and the shot rises but cracks the bar with Korpela stranded. All three of McCabe’s goals this season in the WSL have been corkers, this was almost another. Ronaldinho esc with no back lift on the shot at all. 0-0
44′ Big Chance: Kim Little fires another shot at Korpela, but is straight down the throat of the goal from distance. Arsenal are looking very likely to score at the moment with bodies flooding forward each time they have possession. 0-0
45′ A minimum of three minutes of added time here at The Hive. 0-0
46′ Big Chance: Miedema fires at the legs of Shelina Zadorsky in a last ditch block. This comes after some great work from Little again down the right side of the pitch. 0-0
47′ Spurs are begging for the whistle and are being very stubborn in defense after being dominated for 45. 0-0
Half Time – The whistle blows thankfully for Tottenham 0-0
Tottenham have clinched onto a 0-0 score line at half time and on Skinner’s birthday she will be pleased going into the dressing room. Though Arsenal have dominated possession in the first half, Tottenham have defended really well, throwing bodies on the line and clearing when needed. The Spurs forwards haven’t had a touch barely this half, shown by their 0 shots, but Spurs are working their socks off. Arsenal on the flip side are being patient and are moving the ball quickly looking to break Tottenham down. McCabe has once again been the stand out player so far.
Game Kicks Off – 0-0
45′ The match starts again with Spurs kicking off from right to left. 0-0
50′ Yellow Card: Maeva Clemaron recieves a booking after Katie McCabe shows her brilliance again, as she drives and skips past 4 challenges then gets taken down by a tag team challenge from Neville and Clemaron.
53′ Big Chance: Korpela denies Mead from point blank distance, by making her self very big and provides yet another outstanding save. How has that not ended up in the back of the net? 0-0
Arsenal haven’t trailed a single second in their WSL campaign this season and don’t look like they will today yet again.
55′ Big Chance: Yet again Miedema can’t find the net after some amazing footwork, putting Neville on the floor after McCabe also sits her down. Miedema’s final shot is blazed over the bar slightly, to the top right hand corner. 0-0
57′ Big Chance: Miedema denied again after a block from Neville. This came from some great build up from centre half Leah Williamson and then Mead flicks the ball off to the oncoming Dutch international.
63′ Substitution for Tottenham: Skinner makes the first change of the game. 0-0
GOAL for Tottenham! – Arsenal behind for the first time this season 1-0
66′ Rachel Williams scores after Manuela Zinsbereger produces two stunning saves, but the third rebound falls to Williams who bulldozes the ball over the line to put the hosts in front. Certainly against the run of play but they have executed their plan very well today. 1-0
67′ Substitutions for The Gunners: Eidevall responds to the goal straight away. 1-0
70′ Big Chance: Spurs should’ve got a second but Neville fluffs her chance skying the ball from just eight yards out over an open goal. Zinsberger produces a great save but parried it straight back into danger. 1-0
80′ Substitutions for Tottenham:
81′ What is the referee doing? – Arsenal score but the play is brought back 1-0
The play is interrupted after a cynical foul from Neville who picks up a yellow, but confusing refereeing means the counter attack which was definitely on for The Gunners is stopped. A very weird moment in the game. 1-0
82′ Yellow Card: Beth Mead gets booked for disent towards the referee following the incident. 1-0
84′ Substitutions for The Gunners: OFF: Lia Waelti ON: Mana Iwabuchi – OFF: Beth Mead ON: Caitlin Foord
92′ GOAL! Miedema of course – She climbs high from the McCabe corner 1-1
The Dutch sensation once again comes up with another magical moment, when she thought it wasn’t her day by missing a few chances, she climbs the highest and thumps home a powerful header into the roof of the net. That is a well deserved goal for Arsenal, though Tottenham have been very resolute and denied Arsenal very well up until that point. 1-1
95′ Big Chance: A recycled ball is headed over by the unmarked Leah Williamson about 10 yards out. That could’ve been the winner from the Arsenal defender. One minute to go here now. 1-1
Full Time – The game is finished at The Hive, as Arsenal drop their first points in the league. 1-1
After a tough encounter for both teams, they both left everything out on the pitch, the honours are shared here this afternoon. Tottenham will be proud of their strong defending against the league leaders but will be saddened by the late goal from Miedema. Arsenal put up a very strong effort as well, dominating most of the game but lacked that cutting edge for 90 minutes. Arsenal will go home happy with the one point considering earlier circumstances in the match.