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  • By Charlie Stong at Emirates Stadium

Arsenal Women make it two wins out of two in the Champions League with victory over FC Zurich Women

Arsenal Women 3

Nobbs 38, Hurtig 45+1, 78

FC Zurich Women 1

Piubel, 78

Arsenal’s women followed up their majestic 5-1 Champions League win over holders Lyon last week with another fine victory – 3-1 against FC Zurich Women at the Emirates Stadium this evening.

On a night when the men had lost 2-0 to PSV Eindhoven in Holland, it was left to the women to put a smile back on the fans’ faces, and they did not disappoint.

A wonder volley from Jordan Nobbs – her first strike of the season – and a second from Lina Hurtig put the Gunners 2-0 up at the break.

And although Seraina Piubel pulled one back for the Swiss side, Hurtig’s second sealed the win.

Arsenal dominated from the off, Jen Beattie testing goalkeeper Lourdes Romero with a header from Beth Mead’s free-kick after just three minutes.

Hurtig then controlled a falling ball on the edge of the Zurich box, swivelled and curled a shot just over the crossbar.

Zurich were frustrating the Gunners with some organised defending, but the home side did take the lead through Nobbs seven minutes before the break.

A cross from the left by Steph Catley was slightly too close to Nobbs for a comfortable volley, but she managed to move her body backwards and side-foot volley an absolute beauty off the bar and into the net, giving Romero no chance.

And it was 2-0 as the clock ticked over to 45 minutes. Nobbs was dispossessed down the right but the ball was regained by Arsenal’s Mana Iwabuchi.

Her cross sat up invitingly and Hurtig beat everyone to the header to glance it past Romero to give the Gunners some breathing space.

Zurich had a glorious chance to get back into the game within a minute of the restart.

Piubel won the ball high up the pitch and found herself in the box with a shooting chance, but put her effort wide.

At the other end Iwabuchi had a decent effort easily saved by Romero.

Arsenal began to take charge again and were almost three up after 68 minutes.

Katie McCabe’s cross from the left was met by Vivianne Miedema, who headed the ball over the onrushing Romero but there wasn’t enough power on the effort, and the goalkeeper managed to get back to stop the ball before it crossed the line.

But with 14 minutes left, and from absolutely nowhere, Zurich were back in it.

Piubel perfectly controlled Eleni Markou’s centre on her chest, twisted and arrowed a shot off the crossbar and into the roof of the net.

Piubel celebrated wildly with her team and all the substitutes, thrilled at scoring at the Emirates.

But within two minutes the Gunners’ two-goal advantage was restored, when Hurtig tapped in after Romero had parried Stina Blackstenius’ shot.

Lyon’s draw at Juventus means the Gunners move five points clear of the holders at the top of the group, and two clear of the Italians, with four games still to play.


Arsenal: Marckese, Wubben-Moy, Beattie, Catley (McCabe, 59), Nobbs, Mead (Maanum, 59), Little (Blackstenius 75), Miedema, Maritz, Hurtig, Iwabuchi

Zurich: Romero, Megroz (Pando, 90), Bernauer (Rey h/t), Stierli, Markou, Pinther (Wos, 81), Riesen, Piubel, Humm, Dubs (Pilgrim, 60), Vetterlein

Referee: Lina Lehtovaara

Picture: Charlie Stong


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