Arsenal will go into today’s clash with Bristol City in the knowledge that if results go their way and they win here, they will claim the Spring Series title.
One point behind leaders Chelsea and second-placed Manchester City ahead of kick-off, it’s important that Pedro Martinez Losa’s side first focus on their own performance before worrying about that of their title rivals.
After all, they have an unbeaten run to continue. If Arsenal are victorious at Bristol, they’ll finish as the only unbeaten team in the competition and are also on a three-match winning streak.
Victories against Birmingham, Manchester City and most recently, Reading, mean that they have an outside chance of securing the title.
Chelsea’s goal difference was boosted by a poor defensive showing from Bristol City Women last time out, resulting in a 4-0 drubbing midweek.
Lily Agg’s late equaliser saw today’s hosts earn a point against title-challengers Liverpool prior to that defeat, which highlights just how unpredictable this league can be at times.
Bristol played in WSL 2 last season but the most recent meeting between these two sides was in May 2015, where goals from Chioma Ubogagu and Nikki Watts meant the points were shared at Stoke Gifford Stadium.
In the other fixture from that campaign, Carla Humphrey’s close-range strike, coupled with Vicky Losada’s first goal for Arsenal helped seal a 2-0 victory.
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Carter has been recently linked with a lucrative move to Manchester City and her performances justify why she’s being courted by Arsenal’s title rivals.
The 24-year-old broke into the Gunners first-team during the 2009-10 campaign and hasn’t looked back since, though she’ll be eager to end the season with more goals having netted the only strike against Reading on Wednesday.
Bristol are eager to challenge themselves against the league’s best and a tricky test against Arsenal is a great opportunity to recover from a frustrating loss earlier in the week.
Claire Emslie said, “It’s been good preparation for us ahead of the next WSL1 campaign and hopefully we can finish off with something good against Arsenal.”
Jordan Nobbs, Arsenal’s club captain stressed the importance of another win and the 24-year-old is keen to avoid focusing her energies on other results, instead looking forward to the final game of the campaign instead.
“We’re up to third now, but we just need to win our next game, that is all we are focused on. Unfortunately we have to hope other results go our way but all we can do is make sure we perform well, get the three points and then just see what happens.
“It’s been a good Spring Series but we just need to get the three points against Bristol, and then hope other results go our way.”
Manchester City have a tough clash up against Liverpool while Chelsea face a trip to Birmingham, who’ve only won once in seven fixtures.
With kick-off scheduled for a 3.30pm (BST) start, it promises to be an intriguing finish to the Spring Series.