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Vivianne Miedema scores in final Arsenal appearance as Gunners thrash Brighton
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Reuben Rosso-Powell,PA
Press Association
Vivianne Miedema (right) was on the scoresheet in a big Arsenal win (Mark Kerton/PA)
Vivianne Miedema (right) was on the scoresheet in a big Arsenal win (Mark Kerton/PA)

Vivianne Miedema scored in her final appearance for Arsenal as the Gunners claimed a comprehensive 5-0 victory over Brighton in the Women’s Super League.

The WSL’s all-time record goalscorer, who will leave Arsenal when her contract runs out this summer, came off the bench to net after Alessia Russo’s first-half brace had put the hosts in charge.

Frida Maanum was also on the scoresheet along with a Jorelyn Carabali own goal as the hosts dominated at Meadow Park.

Arsenal took their time to get going as they struggled to find their rhythm. The Gunners were exploiting space down the wings but a wayward cross from Beth Mead to Caitlin Foord in the 15th minute was all they had mustered up to that point.

But it was England forward Russo who was made the difference in the 17th minute when a superb piece of individual skill opened the scoring.

Russo was well-positioned on the edge of the box when she received a short pass from Emily Fox. Instead of combining with a team-mate, the striker hit an audacious first-time shot which nestled into the top left-hand corner.

Brighton were hardly at the races but Elisabeth Terland’s effort which hit the crossbar against the run of play summed up their frustrating opening period.

Russo’s potent instincts then punished Brighton again when she capitalised on a mistake from Guro Bergsvand to make it 2-0.

The Norwegian centre-back fell victim to Arsenal’s press when her pass-back was intercepted and Russo produced a neat first touch before rounding Sophie Baggaley and tapping home.

Arsenal came out swinging after the break as they looked to claim a third. Kim Little found a pocket of space down the right-hand side and her inch-perfect delivery was met by Steph Catley in the box.

Catley controlled the floated ball with a quick touch, drawing some contact in the penalty area which referee Lauren Impey deemed a penalty.

Little stepped up from 12-yards but she dragged her effort on to the left-hand post as Brighton avoided a nightmare start to the second half.

But Brighton’s back line was breached once again in the 64th minute. Russo was replaced by the departing Miedema and the prolific Dutch forward had a dream start when she scored with one of her first touches.

The 27-year-old held her run perfectly as she was slipped through one-on-one and made no mistake in front of goal, rolling her effort into the corner of the net with a composed finish.

Not long after Arsenal added a fourth goal as Laia Codina’s header forced full-back Carabali to put the ball into her own net.

Maanum went through on goal to add a fifth as Arsenal signed off with a convincing 5-0 victory and a third-place finish in this season’s WSL.


Arsenal WomenBrighton & Hove Albion Women
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