Issy Hobson: Everton’s 16-year-old superstar making WSL history

Issy Hobson of Everton celebrates with teammates during the Barclays Women´s Super League match vs Arsenal
Issy Hobson of Everton celebrates with teammates during the Barclays Women´s Super League match vs Arsenal at Walton Hall Park on April 28, 2024 (Photo by Ben Roberts Photo/Getty Images)

Everton celebrated an historic result against Arsenal on Sunday as they fought for a hard-earned point at Walton Hall Park. In sensational fighting spirit, Issy Hobson became the youngest goalscorer in Women’s Super League history. She popped up with a brilliant stoppage time equaliser to stun the Gunners.

After a first half that failed to ignite, with Everton and Arsenal both showing restraint, the game burst into life. Alessia Russo broke the deadlock with a dazzling strike, injecting much-needed energy into the match. This goal underscored Arsenal’s historical dominance over Everton, with the Gunners boasting an impressive streak of 18 wins in their last 19 Women’s Super League encounters against the Toffees. A record stretching back to their very first meeting in July 2011.

Yet, amidst mounting tension and the echoes of history seemingly set to repeat, the plot took an unexpected turn thanks to a teenage sensation from the Everton bench. Issy Hobson, at just 16 — with nerves of steel and the poise of a seasoned pro — delivered a stunning equaliser deep into stoppage time to clinch a dramatic draw against Arsenal. Marking the first time in 17 encounters that Everton had thwarted the Gunners’ bid for victory.

History-making Hobson

Brought on in the 81st minute, Hobson immediately injected verve and daring into Everton’s play. She challenged Arsenal’s right flank, out-manoeuvring seasoned internationals like Beth Mead with audacious skill and determination. As the clock ticked down, the atmosphere thickened with anticipation.

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Then, in the electrifying fifth minute of added time, Hobson rose at a corner, her head meeting the ball with precision and force. The ball soared over Manuela Zinsberger and the scrambling Arsenal defence to find the back of the net, causing the stands at Walton Hall Park to erupt. 

Hobson, who made history as Everton’s youngest senior debutant since 2010 earlier this February, is fast becoming the beacon of hope for the Toffees. Her first senior goal — an emblematic header to be replayed in highlight reels — signals the rise of a new star. Issy Hobson isn’t just a player to watch, she’s a player to remember.

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