Jill Roord starred in Arsenal’s 6-1 win over Reading, scoring a magnificent hat-trick on matchday one.
Joe Montemurro’s side needed to come into the new season with a fire in their belly after losing to PSG in the Champions League quarter-finals to PSG.
The Gunners did exactly that at Borehamwood on Sunday as they galloped to an impressive victory.
Captain Kim Little opened the scoring after 15 minutes. The Scottish midfielder was found with a beautiful lofted ball from Leah Williamson.Embed from Getty Images
Little masterfully tucked the ball away, her curling effort beyond Grace Maloney in the Reading net.
Vivianne Miedema once again flexed her ability as a striker, getting Arsenal’s second. The Dutch superstar calmly struck home to double the Gunners’ lead.
Miedema’s second was even better. After being denied a couple of clear chances in the second half, she thumped the ball in from outside of the area.
The ball cannoned off the bar and into the net, it even garnered a rare celebration from the striker.
Reading struggled to create many meaningful opportunities in the first half. Arsenal capitalised on their quality of possession to add a third.
Jill Roord was the star of the show on Sunday. The Dutch midfielder scored herself a lovely hat-trick.
Her second came after Kim Little easily found Roord on the edge of the six-yard box after beating the backline for a simple tap-in.
Roord was spectacularly denied her hat-trick by Molly Bartrip on the line, getting her body in the way.
However, she still managed to get her third to take home the match ball. A short ball from Caitlin Foord was all she needed for an easy finish.
Reading started the second half much better than the first with former Gunner Danielle Carter having a golden opportunity to get one back in the opening seconds of the second period.
Carter got herself a goal in the dying moments of the game after Manuela Zinsberger presented the ball on a platter for her former teammate.
Arsenal did have the ball in the net again at one point, but Jordan Nobbs’ finish was ruled to have been from an offside position.
Jess Fishlock made her Super League return against Arsenal, with the Welsh dynamo putting in a fine performance in midfield. Especially considering this was Fishlock’s first competitive appearance since her ACL injury.
The last two winners of the WSL have been a side without Champions League football. Perhaps the lack of European adventure this season will play into Arsenal’s hands in terms of the title race.
Steph Catley and Noelle Maritz both made their debuts for Arsenal against Reading. Both putting in very solid first performances in red and white.
Australian Caitlin Foord also made her long-awaited league debut for the Gunners. Foord had made appearances in the FA Cup, Continental Cup and Champions League before Sunday’s game but finally made played her first league minutes for the London club.
Before the game, Reading manager Kelly Chambers reiterated her desire for the Royals to break into the top three of the Women’s Super League. Her side will have to do much better to make that dream a reality.