WSL and League Cup final: talking points from the weekend’s action

Emma Hayes goes too far, Bunny Shaw hits a goal-of-the-season contender and Leicester end a difficult week well

Emma Hayes was asked before the Continental League Cup final whether the competition mattered more to Arsenal as it was the Gunners’ only realistic chance of silverware. She rubbished the comment but there can be little doubt about just how much it mattered to Chelsea with emotions spilling over after a gritty showdown at Molineux in which Stina Blackstenius scored the winner deep into extra time. Hayes’ shove on Jonas Eidevall and subsequent accusations of “male aggression” may have deflected from a poor performance from her team, a common tactic for losing managers, but they were also not OK. Hayes was unhappy with the way Eidevall “fronted up to Erin [Cuthbert]” but replays painted a different picture – one of Eidevall yelling at staff pitchside for delivering a ball that wasn’t the match ball when Chelsea had blocked a multi-ball system being used, Cuthbert taking the throw in, and then the player approaching Eidevall before re-entering the game. Eidevall called the label Hayes used “irresponsible” and he’s not wrong. To accuse someone of “male aggression” implies a general aggressiveness towards women and is a dangerous denigration of someone’s character which, in this instance, seemed well wide of the mark. Suzanne Wrack

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