Joe Montemurro full of praise for Jordan Nobbs following Arsenal's win over Aston Villa
- Credit: PA
Manager Joe Montemurro was full of praise for Jordan Nobbs following Arsenal's 4-0 win over Aston Villa on Sunday afternoon.
The Gunners were frustrated in the first half but second half strikes from Vivianne Miedema, Nobbs, Katie McCabe and Lisa Evans made it a comfortable afternoon for the Gunners at the Bescot Stadium.
Nobbs returned to the squad and captained the team to the win scoring the second goal, and Montemurro said: "We all know Jordan’s qualities and it’s been an up and down season for her because of injuries and other things but it’s great to have her energy and her leadership back, it’s something we’ve missed in some of the bigger games."
After a frustrating first half Montemurro was asked why Arsenal hit so many shots from outside the box and he said: "We’re a team that doesn't like to waste opportunities in and around the box, and sometimes you’ve just got to be in the mindset to make sure that if you are going to shoot from distance that it’s going to be on target or close.
"They got very, very deep and once we started to play through their lines their middle three got very deep as well.
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"There was one time I counted their entire eleven between the six and 18 yard lines, we had to find different ways and one of the ways is shooting from distance."
The win was the Gunners' first win of 2021 and the Australian said: "Most teams have played more games than us this year but sometimes you just get those situations and the scheduling has been what it has been and you accept that.
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"To have only played four games in two and a half months is not easy but today was a good rhythm game, we found a good rhythm and we found a bit of our belief and our way of playing again.
"I was very happy with that even at half-time when we just needed to tweak a couple of things to get the result and that’s great from a coaching perspective when you only have to make small adjustments knowing that you’re in control."
Arsenal are now six points off the Champions League spots but can't afford to slip up in any of the remaining games.
"We made a pact to get back to where we want to be in terms of performance," said Montemurro. "it’s all in our hands now and we need to keep our confidence and belief and to keep smiling."
Vivianne Miedema came off after she put Arsenal in the lead and Montemurro said: "The Dutch players had a big week, they played Germany on Wednesday so they had a short turnaround and they played two tough games so we planned to take all three of them off if we could, they’re all good and everyone is in good spirits."
Jill Roord put in a good performance in the number 10 position and why she was selected there ahead of Jordan Nobbs and Danielle van de Donk, Montemurro said: "She’s a player who can attract a couple of players and keep the ball for us with her strength and wait for players working underneath, which might dislodge a defence or dislodge a back four.
"She has different qualities and Danielle and Jordan are more players who work behind the lines and Jill is very good working underneath the line.
"If we have her and Vivianne Miedema coming underneath and then players going over it’s very difficult to defend and Jill just brings that quality."
Montemurro was asked about Beth Mead's performance after being initially dropped from the England squad, before being called up as a late replacement.
"I can only commend Beth, she was disappointed when she initially didn’t make the squad but she’s just gotten on with things and worked harder, and asked for more information and she wants to prove she is the player we know she is," he said. "And you saw today how dangerous she was every time she got the ball, and she is just a pleasure to work with."