Lauren Hemp and Chloe Kelly goals against Arsenal put Manchester City in the WSL title race

Lauren Hemp and Chloe Kelly goals against Arsenal put Manchester City in the WSL title race

"We might have been up by five or six.

With a decisive 2-1 victory over Arsenal to put themselves squarely in the Women's Super League title race, Manchester City manager Gareth Taylor was left impressed with his team's performance.

Lionesses Lauren Hemp and Chloe Kelly scored goals at either end of the field in the first half to give City a well-deserved 2-0 lead; only a few saves from Manuela Zinsberger kept the game close.

Rafaelle Souza's header gave Arsenal a point, but they never seriously threatened an equalizer as City won to surpass the Gunners and move up to third place.

Taylor expressed his pride in the team's effort and their bravery in the second half.

"With the opportunities we created, we could have been five or six up at halftime and should have been out of sight.

"The girls deserve that so much, and I'm so proud of them.

"You can feel a little closer or feel like you're miles away from the table at different times. There was a significant shift after beating Leicester, especially with two teams [Manchester United and Arsenal] drawing.

"We've put ourselves in a good position, but we aren't getting ahead of ourselves.

Lauren Hemp celebrates a goal for Manchester City
For Manchester City this season in the WSL, winger Lauren Hemp has scored three goals.

"I genuinely think that this team can win the league,".

City has only ever won the WSL once, in 2016, but last season they finished third, nine points behind Chelsea, and this season they have already suffered back-to-back losses.

Nevertheless, they haven't dropped a league match since and are only two points behind Emma Hayes' team, despite the fact that the leaders have a game left to play.

Hemp said after scoring her 50th City goal, "I really do believe this team can win the league.

"The squad is amazing and has such a family-like atmosphere; we all fight for one another.

"Obviously, our goal is to take the league. It is now open. Being consistent will allow us to face even the best.

Arsenal had managed to keep 16 clean sheets in their previous 21 away WSL games, but they found it difficult to contain Hemp on the left wing, Kelly on the right, and league leader Khadija Shaw through the middle.

With Yui Hasegawa also hitting the crossbar, Zinsberger made a few saves to stop Shaw, Filippa Angeldahl, and Kelly from scoring.

We are not stupid, and we are aware that we are creating a lot of chances. Nevertheless, Hemp continued, "We need to score more goals; it needs to get better.

A crowd of 4,542 supporters cheered on City, who have not lost at home in the WSL in 14 games, dating back to November 2021.

After scoring a goal and providing an assist, Kelly was named player of the game. "It was a brilliant day, and we knew when we play at home that nobody can play against us," he said.

"Gaz [Taylor] just gives me confidence right now. He's letting me play freely, and I'm having fun on the field.

"I'm at my best and, really, just having fun, when I'm having fun.

"I feel like I'm just a little girl having fun playing football. It's wonderful to play with such a talented group of girls; we put up a great fight and focused on the team.

Eidevall admits defeat and accepts blame.

Arsenal only lost out on the championship last season by one point, but in their last three league games, they have drawn twice and lost once.

They are five points behind the lead despite continuing to be without forwards Beth Mead and Vivianne Miedema, both of whom have been absent for a long time due to serious knee injuries.

Rafaelle Souza celebrates her goal for Arsenal
Only one of Arsenal's two shots on goal succeeded, a header by Rafaelle Souza.

According to manager Jonas Eidevall, "We lost possession way too frequently in the game, especially in very dangerous areas.".

"It will be very challenging to win football games when you lose possession in those risky areas so frequently.

We made changes during the game, but I am solely responsible for our failure to prevail. After scoring, we had to make them exert more effort.

"The effort and attitude are not the issue; rather, we need to exercise better control over the games.


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