Tag Archives: north London Derby

WSL Update: Nick Cushing signs off with a win against Arsenal

Departing Manchester City manger Nick Cushing ended his six-year stint with the club this past weekend by completing a 2-1 win over Arsenal.

Cushing was presented with an achievement award before the game by current club captain Steph Houghton.

During Cushing’s time with the club he led them to one league title, two Women’s FA Cups and three Women’s League Cup’s.

In form striker Pauline Bremer scored the opener for City just before half time from close range. Lauren Hemp doubled their advantage with a looping header.

Danielle Van de Donk pulled a goal back for the Gunners but it was not enough to deny Cushing a dream send off.

The win leaves City a point ahead of closest challengers Chelsea, however the Citizens have played a game more than Emma Hayes’ side.

Chelsea maintained their impressive form by scoring eight goals past West Ham United in an 8-0 win over Matt Beard’s team.

Both Maren Mjelde and Beth England scored twice, while further goals from Scottish winger Erin Cuthbert, Sophie Ingle and substitutes Ramona Bachmann and Emily Murphy completed the scoring.

Casey Stoney’s Manchester United were denied all three points at Adams Park thanks to a Fara Williams penalty, which earned Reading a 1-1 draw with the Red Devils. Both sides remain fourth and sixth respectively in the WSL.

Elsewhere Brighton secured a crucial home win against Everton thanks to a goal from Aileen Whelan, who found the bottom right hand corner of the net against her former club.

This win means that the Seagulls are now six points clear of the relegation zone and are in ninth place.

The other two WSL matches, Liverpool versus Birmingham City and Tottenham Hotspur against Bristol City suffered postponements due to waterlogged pitches.

A Look ahead to this weekend’s fixtures

Sunday 9 February

Everton vs Liverpool (Kick-off 2pm)

Goodison Park is set to host its first Women Super League Merseyside Derby. The previous league meeting between the sides took place at Anfield for the first time last November where Everton secured a 1-0 win.

The Toffee’s recent home form in all competitions has been strong, as they have won three of their last five matches.

Everton’s Merseyside rivals meanwhile have also witnessed an upsurge in form having only lost one of their last five matches.  Although the Reds match with Birmingham City was postponed last weekend.

In terms of the head to head meetings both sides have now won two matches apiece, however the Toffees have won two of their last three encounters with their fierce rivals.

Prediction 1-1 draw

We are anticipating a closely fought encounter between these two sides, predicting that the spoils will be shared on this occasion. 

Arsenal vs Tottenham Hotspur (2pm)

The WSL fixture list has provided another famous English derby this weekend.

Joe Montemurro’s Arsenal side have endured a tricky time of it as of late, having lost to both their title rivals consecutively in the league.

Their North London rivals however are also going through a difficult spell, particularly away from home where they have lost four of their last five matches.

Prediction: Arsenal 2-0 win

Predicting the Gunners to get back to winning ways.

Birmingham City vs Brighton & Hove Albion (2pm)

Only one place separates these teams in the table ahead of this weekends matches.

Hope Powell’s Brighton got a big win against Everton last time out, though they are still to record a victory away from home in the WSL this season.

Birmingham meanwhile is also struggling for results, having lost four of their last five games.  Their last league win came against fellow strugglers Bristol City at the start of December.

The Seagulls have got a slight edge over their relegation rivals in terms of head-to head encounters having won two of their three meetings.

Prediction: Birmingham 2-1 win

We think due to the fact the pressure is on Birmingham to win this weekend that they will get the result they need.

Bristol City vs Reading (3pm)

This is a crucial game for the league’s bottom side, with two of their relegation rivals playing each other this weekend.

Bristol City are still to win a home league game in this campaign and they have also lost their last five matches in all competitions so the signs do not look good for Tanya Oxtoby’s team.

Reading also have enjoyed a lot of success against the West Midlands club having won five and drawn just once against them in the league.

Prediction: Reading 3-1 win

We believe that all signs seem to point to a relatively comfortable Reading victory.

West Ham United vs Manchester City (3pm)

The WSL leaders Manchester City begin life without Nick Cushing with a trip to East London.

Alan Mahon, previously the assistant manager, is taking interim charge until the end of the season and he will be determined to get off to a good start.

West Ham meanwhile are coming off the back of a heavy 8-0 defeat to City’s title rivals Chelsea, so they will be coming into this one looking to avoid further humiliation.

The reverse fixture between these sides resulted in 5-0 for Manchester City so it promises to be a tough afternoon for the Hammers.

Prediction: Manchester City 3-0 win

Manchester City has won all three previous encounters with West Ham in the league and we believe they will get the three points in this one to get Mahon off to a winning start.

Manchester United vs Chelsea (4:30pm) – BT Sport

The final game of the weekend promises to be an intriguing one.  Both of these teams met in the Continental Tyres Cup Semi-Final just a week ago with Chelsea coming out 1-0 winners on that occasion, setting up an all London final with Arsenal next month.

In the league’s reverse fixture the Blues also ran out 1-0 winners so all signs seem to point to another close encounter.

Casey Stoney’s side has also only lost twice in the league at home this season.

Prediction Chelsea 2-1 win

We believe this will be another close game with the title favourites Chelsea just coming away with the win.  

Number 200: is this the biggest Merseyside derby yet ?

Everton have won only 2 of their last 7 games in all competitions and manager Marco Silva is already said to be under pressure in his first season with the toffees. Despite the poor form, Everton are still in 9th place and outside of the ‘big 6’ only Wolves and surprise package Watford are ahead of them.

The Blues won their last game 3-0 against Cardiff City so come into the 200th Merseyside derby with confidence. Last time out only a 96th minute winner from Divock Origi separated the two teams in December, and this time Everton would love nothing more than to get the victory and derail Liverpool’s title hopes.

The Toffees have no fresh injury worries, with defenders Kurt Zouma and Phil Jagielka both included in the squad last time out, Leighton Baines is also back in training and could be in contention.

Liverpool’s race for their first Premier League title is in the final furlong, the Anfield club has wobbled recently winning only 3 of their last 7 games, drawing 4 and allowing Manchester City to cut the gap down to just 1 point. Now any slip up could see Guardiola’s side swap places at the top of the league.

The reds smashed 5 past Watford on Wednesday in a fantastic display, showing their doubters that the pressure won’t hold them back. They will also be buoyed by the fact that it’s now 8 years since Everton last won against them, also no club has won more games at Goodison Park than Liverpool.

The Reds defence has been vital to their form this season and in arguably the world’s best defender Virgil Van Dijk they have a threat at both ends of the field with the Dutchman scoring twice last time out, this is ominous for an Everton side top among the teams that have conceded the most goals from set pieces.

Liverpool will be without defenders Dejan Lovren and Joe Gomez, forward Roberto Firmino should return after his injury in the Manchester United game.

With all these stats in mind it looks like a hard day at the office for Everton but keep this in mind that 5 of the last 10 Merseyside derbies have ended in a draw, couple this with a chance to potentially knock their City rivals off the premier league summit the old cliche rings true, all form goes out the window in a derby.

Wayne Edge @oasis1711

North London derby preview

This Saturday afternoon sees the 182nd North London derby as Tottenham host Arsenal at Wembley. Spurs will be looking to bounce back from Wednesday’s defeat to London rivals Chelsea.

Since Tottenham lost 2-1 to Burnley in the Premier League, the Lilywhites might have liked a more comfortable 2 games to get back on their horse, but a trip to Chelsea followed by the North London derby isn’t what Mauricio Pochettino would have wanted. The loss to Chelsea saw the Spurs defence all over the place, first allowing Pedro to run through them and score from close range followed by Keiran Trippier slotting past Lloris for the Blues’ second in a moment of total miscommunication. Tottenham will have to tighten up their usually strong defence if they hope to stop a free-firing Arsenal frontline.

One positive for Spurs is that in the last 5 games against the Gunners they have won 3 with 2 of those being at home. The chance of winning the league may have all but faded but Tottenham need to stop the rot and make sure they don’t drop out of the top 4 with Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United all breathing down their necks.

For Arsenal, the derby comes off the back of a comfortable 5-1 win over Bournemouth at the Emirates. The Gunners are picking up steam again after the 3-1 loss to Manchester City at the start of February and will be looking to avenge the 2-0 defeat to Spurs in the Carabao cup in December.

Arsenal will hope to keep their frontline scoring with Frenchman Alexandre Lacazette looking to score for the third game in a row. Armenian Henrikh Mkhitaryan has had a slow start to life at the Emirates since the trade which saw Alexis Sanchez move the other way to Old Trafford but has now scored 2 in 2 and will hope to add to his recent upturn in form. Mesut Ozil chipped in with a goal in the last game and can be extremely dangerous but with the German never certain to start, we will have to wait and see if he can play a big role against Tottenham. Confidence is flowing and the creative players are scoring, and luckily for the Gunners, it’s come just in time for the massive derby game.

Harry Kane being back fit is a huge bonus and will surely be key in the absence of Deli Alli. Additionally, Eric Dier will still be missing following his bout of tonsillitis. For the Gunners, Laurent Koscielny could be a doubt and a big loss to an Arsenal backline already without Hector Bellerin.

With a great match in prospect on Saturday, a win for Arsenal will see them just one point away from Spurs, something their rivals will be looking to stop at any cost.

Wayne Edge @oasis1711