Bayer looking to build

Arsenal interim coach John Bayer believes the team’s first FA Women’s Super League victory over the season against Liverpool can provide the impetus for the rest of their campaign.

Sunday’s clash with the reigning champions was Arsenal’s first game since their Women’s FA Cup triumph, but also the first since the departure of manager of Shelley Kerr after the Final on 1 June.

And while it may not have been a pretty winning goal from Casey Stoney, Bayer was grateful for the three points.

Liverpool Ladies 0-1 Arsenal Ladies

FA WSL 1 

Select Security Stadium 

Sunday 29 June 2014

He said: “We’ve worked well at training and really hard on one or two key things, but the main thing was that the group resolved to take their performance from the Cup Final into the rest of the season. 

“That’s what we tried to do and I think it’s given them a real confidence boost. I’m sure it’ll be a real springboard for the rest of the season.

“I haven’t applied for the permanent job. There’s some real talent coming through in the Centre of Excellence, which is very exciting, and that’s really what I can do to contribute most to the club I think.”

The hosts had been forced into a last-minute change with Danielle Gibbons replacing goalkeeper Libby Stout who picked up a knock in the warm up.

But it was opposite number Emma Byrne who was the busier of the keepers earlier on, tipping over Lucy Bronze’s effort before Amanda Da Costa headed over the resulting corner.

Arsenal’s Danielle Carter tested Gibbons on 22 minutes with a 20-yard effort and Bronze did well to avoid slicing into her own goal ten minutes later.

Arsenal’s Jade Bailey in action against Liverpool

But Stoney put the Gunners ahead on 55 minutes, nodding the ball in from a corner after Gibbons got tangled up with teammate Becky Easton.

Natasha Dowie should have equalised six minutes later but shot wide, leaving manager Matt Beard cursing his side’s luck.

“A draw probably would have been a fair result as I don’t think either team had enough clear-cut chances to deserve to win it,” he said.

“Maybe Natasha should have gone across the goalkeeper instead of near post, but it happened quite quickly for her.

“We also had a good chance with Amanda in the first half, and it was just one of those days in front of goal.

“As long as we’re mathematically involved we’re going to do all we can to retain the title, but we’ve been unlucky with injuries this season and the curse seems to have struck again.”