Arsenal Women produced an excellent performance and earned a 1-1 draw against Paris Saint-Germain Women in their second pre-season friendly at the Camp Des Loges.
For their meeting with the UEFA Women’s Champions League runner-ups, Arsenal manager Pedro Losa had selected a more senior team than against Turbine Potsdam and it had the desired effect.
Pictures courtesy of PSG.fr.
Both teams were really sharp with a very good intensity, with Arsenal pressing high and trying to implement their passing game with Williamson the main ball distributor and Nobbs higher on the pitch. Van De Donk was allowed to roam between the PSG lines and help Mead who was isolated up front and struggling to hold the ball up.
PSG got the first real chance when Paredes hit the woodwork from a corner. Arsenal carried on their possession game, having a few shots on and off target, and took the lead through Mead for 1-0. The first-half ended with Arsenal maintaining their lead over PSG.
In the second half, Pedro Losa made a few substitutions, and with the new arrivals the balance of the team was lost. There were six attack-minded players on the pitch for Arsenal and PSG started to find gaps through the middle, putting a lot more pressure on the Londoners and forcing them to defend deeper.
Young Kalani Peart did a good job at the back alongside Henning, playing simple balls and not trying anything extravagant in the defence. But as Arsenal started to tire, with an early 5am wake-up call to get on the first Eurostar to Paris and still being at the early stages of pre-season, PSG took control of the game.
It was interesting to see the difference of playing style between Mead and Miedema when the latter came on. The Dutch forward was very strong against physical defending and should have scored after rolling her marker and beating Kiedrzynek to get a shot away. O’Reilly, who was jostling with Boulleau, tapped the ball in from an offside position.
In the end, PSG’s pressure paid off with an equaliser seven minutes from time, with Delie scoring from close range. It was a deserved equaliser as PSG pushed and pushed in the second half.
Overall, it was a very good test for Arsenal Women. Their next friendly will be against fellow FA WSL 1 side Everton at Borehamwood FC next Thursday.