Arsenal 1 (Stoney 55') - Liverpool 0
Arsenal Starters: Byrne, Scott, Stoney, Fahey, Mitchell, Kinga, Ohno, Smith, Bailey, Yankey, Carter
Subs Used: Williamson for Carter 70'
Unused Subs: Chamberlain, Hoogendijk, Williamson, Murray, Ayisi, Weir
Yes, yes the World Cup is happening, but the rest of the soccer world still turns. Let's take a moment to discuss Arsenal Ladies first FA WSL win of the season. My goodness did it take a few harrowing months, but the Gunners have finally posted a win in FA WSL play and actually are no longer in dead last. No, this is not a joke.
Coming on the heels of their FA Cup victory, the Arsenal Ladies have extended their win streak to two, count em', two games! They now sit at four points on the table, good enough to put them past Everton for second-to-last place. Can you say bragging rights?
Now despite the rough start to the season, the Arsenal Ladies still had an undefeated record in league away games. The Gunners hadn't lost an away game in FA WSL play since July of 2011. Considering they were heading to play last year's league champions in Liverpool, there were some questions to if the streak was coming to an end. Simply put the answer was no. The streak lives on!
You may be wondering who exactly was coaching the team to victory today since Shelley Kerr left the team, and that would be John Bayer. Previously the technical director for the Centre of Excellence, which has produced many wonderful Arsenal Ladies players, Bayer is taking over on an interim basis only. Our gal Kelly Smith is still the assistant player-coach.
If we take a trip back in time to when Kerr initially announced she would be stepping down, I had two candidates off the top of my head. Kelly Smith and Tony Gustavsson. I'd imagine that if Smith was the answer she'd be hired by now, but who knows for sure. As for Gustavsson, he's joined Jill Ellis' staff as an assistant coach for the USWNT. Obviously Gustavsson could still join Arsenal, but I would go ahead and rule that one out at this point.
Someone had also pointed out Tom Sermanni. Most recently, Sermanni was in camp with the Canadian Women's National Team as a "technical consultant" after head coach John Herdman had reached out to him. Apparently it was only for the duration of camp and nothing more. While he is currently on the job market I just don't see it happening.
Sermanni has made his money on the international stage and has proven he can take young talent and build with it. Wile the international job market is kind of set, as teams are either in the middle of World Cup qualifiers or starting them soon, I'm not so sure a team would fire their coach in the middle of qualifying. I could see Sermani ending up on a squad that missed the World Cup, or a team that has a bad showing at the World Cup and he gets hired in time for the Olympics.
Clearly, Arsenal Ladies aren't quite ready to hire Kerr's predecessor and I suppose that's ok. They're (currently) winning. They haven't sold anyone. I'll take that as a win.