Former Gunner Danielle van de Donk secured Lyon the narrow 1-0 victory over Arsenal on a cold night at the Emirates.
Despite no points for Arsenal last night, they have secured a spot in the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Their final positioning in the table depends on how many points they grab in their final group stage match away to Zurich.
A cautious first 20 minutes saw many counter-attacks, however both teams displayed an incredible defensive unit which deterred any through balls or goal scoring opportunities to enter the box.
This was until the 22nd minute when Lotte Wubben-Moy nearly put the Gunners in front with an overpowered header from a corner.
Crucial challenges around the half hour mark were unable to create goals, as both teams shut down play extremely quickly, which maintained the tension and momentum in this tight game.
Australian defender Stephanie Catley quite literally put her body on the line within minutes from the break, which kept it level until Arsenal conceded a set piece.
Katie McCabe’s challenge resulted in a free kick for the visitors at the halfway line, in which Selma Bacha’s precise delivery created danger for Manuela Zinsberger, where van de Donk ended the scramble with a header over the line.
A worrying injury for scoring superstar Vivianne Miedema saw her leave the pitch on a stretcher in added time. Arsenal legend Ian Wright joins many in this saddening moment for the club and what it could mean going forwards at the World Cup.
The Red Army entered the break with a key player and goal down.
Rafaelle Souza slotted into defence, forcing skipper Leah Williamson to push up the pitch into defensive midfield alongside Lia Walti.
Arsenal expressed a real hunger for an equaliser, with many attacking threats coming from McCabe in the channel. All attempts were strategically cleared.
With extra strength in the host’s midfield, Lyon appeared shy to extend their lead, and took a more defensive approach to the game.
The 84th minute saw another booking for McCabe.
Game changer Lina Hurtig nearly found the net from a low cross in the final third, but Christiane Endler scooped up the ball calmly.
The Gooners held onto hope right up until the last free kick in extra time, but Arsenal were unable to find the net.
7,711 fans witnessed this defeat for Arsenal, as Lyon showcased their winning ways.
All eyes turn to the final group stage games, where every point is crucial for Arsenal and Lyon, to see who enters in the top spot.