Emma Hayes admits she won’t be at full strength to face Arsenal Women tomorrow

Eidevall has a rough idea of his FA Cup lineup, but Hayes isn’t sure about Chelsea’s international stars.

Arsenal Women face Chelsea in the fifth round of the Vitality FA Cup. By the end of Sunday, one of Chelsea or Arsenal will be out of the running for the FA Cup. Arsenal fans will be hoping that Chelsea is the team to bow out of the competition.

Arsenal will have a tough task beating Chelsea, who are unbeaten in 20 games; they last lost to Liverpool back in September, but a football match is unpredictable; it is a game of chances, and the Arsenal Women will have to take theirs. At his disposal, coach Eidevall will have a fresh, rejuvenated squad ready to come back with a bang, but he will be without the services of Vivienne Miedema, Beth Mead, Sabrina D’Angelo, and Lina Hurtig. In his press conference ahead of the FA battle with Chelsea, the Arsenal boss admitted on Arsenal.com, “We have Lina, that couldn’t play for Sweden – also an injury we have to investigate a little bit, so those two are two question marks, but apart from that, no more.

“Beth Mead is doing fine; the reports I’m getting from our medical team is that it’s progressing like we’d hope it would be.”

Arsenal will need to be at their best if they are to fashion a win over Chelsea. But nothing is impossible.
Anyway, the consolation for Arsenal women is that Chelsea boss Emma Hayes is yet to assess her returning international players and have an idea of who she can count on for the clash against Arsenal.

“They should be back by now, but it just shows you the challenges [of the international break],’ said Hayes of the 15 Chelsea stars who were on international duty (as per the Daily Mail). “They are all flying in from everywhere, and I see them as human beings. [After] long haul flights they are not going to be at their best immediately and then they have to perform two days later. You have to give them the maximum amount of time to recover.

“That’s why you prepare squads which are going to be ready for the whole season. There’s going to be moments like this where you have to make decisions based on those factors and that’s why I’m always advocating a squad.”

Do you think Arsenal women will get their first win of the year by beating a weakened Chelsea?

Michelle Maxwell

WATCH – Jonas Eidevall interviewed ahead of big Chelsea clash.

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