Here is the full League season review, after the 2015 campaign saw the Arsenal Ladies finish in third place with 27 points, improving on last season’s fourth place with 21 points.
It was the first full season in charge for Pedro Losa and he has done a good job overall, steering the team to third place and coming short of a Champions League place by just three points. Five players left the club prior to the start of the season: Fahey, Kinga, Ohno, Murray and Ayisi, with Losa signing Sanderson, Rose, Losada and Sanchon to replace them and form a solid backbone for the team.
Notts County 1 Arsenal 1 (Ubogagu)
Arsenal were handed a tough assignment with an away game to self proclaimed title/Champions League place contenders Notts County. Chioma Ubogagu rescued a point late in the game on her debut as a substitute.
Arsenal 2 Bristol 0 (Humphrey, Losada)
First goals for youngster Carla Humphrey and new Spanish signing Vicky Losada ensured a comfortable victory against an already struggling Bristol side that was hammered 12-0 on aggregrate in the Champions League to start their season. They never recovered from it.
Man City 0 Arsenal 1 (Ubogagu)
A crucial win early in the season for the Gunners against an ambitious City, who were yet to hit top form. Jill Scott was sent off for City for slapping Jade Bailey. Chioma Ubogagu continued her sensational run of form with a match winning goal.
Arsenal 4 Sunderland 1 (Pablos Sanchon x 2, Humphrey, Carter)
A game marred by the horrible ankle injury to Kelly Smith that would keep her out until the end of the season. The harvester Abbie Holmes with an over the top challenge that led to her dismissal and a penalty while the game was locked in a 1-1 draw. Smith’s magic turned the game on but her season ended here. FA took no action on Holmes with a pathetic one-game ban.
Chelsea 0 Arsenal 0
A tough game away to Chelsea with both side close to open the scoring. Both side fully committed tactically and physically saw them play out a fair result in the end.
Bristol 1 Arsenal 1 (Ubogagu)
A surprising draw against a resurgent Bristol side. Complacency was a word mentioned post game. Chioma Ubogagu scoring another important goal keeping the side unbeaten run.
Halfway through the season Arsenal Ladies were second in the table with 12 points, trailing Chelsea by two points. Then came the World Cup and a few injuries that deprived Arsenal of players.
During the summer window Sanderson, Weir and Chamberlain (on loan) left to pastures new while Losa signed three World Cup players in Spain’s Corredera and Netherland’s Van Veenendaal and Janssen, plus young goalie Rogers.
Arsenal 1 Liverpool 3 (Pablos Sanchon)
A first league defeat and a surprising one at home. Arsenal were caught napping several times and, combined with individual mistakes, it led to an unexpected defeat and a first setback in race for the title and Champions League football.
Birmingham 0 Arsenal 1 (Ubogagu)
A precious away win with another match-winning goal from Chioma Ubogagu. Arsenal were gifted a numerical advantage when former Gunner Freda Ayisi was sent off for two bookable offence. As a member of Arsenal youth system she was always prone to do something unnecessary, and it was one of those occasions.
Arsenal 2 Notts County 1 (Carter, Pablos Sanchon)
Another vital win against a team that called themselves being a BIG team after reaching the FA Cup final. Notts scored early on the break and then parked the bus for 87 minutes but Arsenal managed to break their stubborn resistance.
Arsenal 2 Man City 3 (Scott, Pablos Sanchon)
Arsenal were outwitted by a stronger and superior City side that showed maturity in their passing as well as excellent pressing high on the pitch. A second home defeat put another dent in the Gunners title hope.
Arsenal 0 Chelsea 2
Sari Van Veenendaal became first choice in the League for the first time until the end of the season, following a few handling and kicking errors by Emma Byrne. Again Arsenal were caught making mistakes that led to a goal conceded from a set piece and also a rash penalty given up. That was the final nail in Arsenal Ladies’ chance to win the title and a place in the Champions League, as Chelsea and Manchester City took a huge lead over the Gunners.
Liverpool 0 Arsenal 2 (Janssen, Nobbs)
Arsenal were back on track but it was too little too late. Dominique Janssen scored a beautiful free-kick for her first club goal and Jordan Nobbs, who was now back from her long term injury and in great form, finished off the game.
Sunderland 1 Arsenal 3 (Ubogagu x2, Pablos Sanchon)
Arsenal maintained the slim hope of getting a Champions League spot with another away win, this time at another contender and promoted team Sunderland. Chioma Ubogagu and Natalia Pablos Sanchon were again on the scoresheet.
Arsenal 1 Birmingham 0 (Pablos Sanchon)
Arsenal ended up the season in third place, coming short in the hunt for the title and champions league place that looked good before the World Cup break. Natalia Pablos Sanchon with the winner .
The full League season record : P14 W8 D3 L3 GF 21 GA 13 27 points
Natalia Pablos Sanchon (7)
Chioma Ubogagu (6)
Carla Humphrey & Danielle Carter (2)
Vicky Losada Alex Scott, Dominique Janssen & Jordan Nobbs (1)
A good season that could have been great had the team not lost so many home games after the World Cup. Next season will be crucial as investment will be made to compete with Chelsea and City with quality players expected to sign up during the winter transfer window.