Beth Mead inspires a late Arsenal comeback, while Liverpool suffer a history-repeating loss to local rivals

The return of England forward Beth Mead naturally stole the headlines after 11 months out following an ACL injury, but it was the Arsenal star’s quick resumption of her burgeoning relationship with match-winner Alessia Russo that was the highlight. “Let’s hope so,” said the manager, Jonas Eidevall, when asked whether their connection for Arsenal’s second in a dramatic 2-1 defeat of Aston Villa was the start of something special in red and white. “We see them together in their national team, so it’s not a hope that is based on just fantasies; we have seen that work in reality.” Mead’s inspirational entrance lifted Arsenal off the title race ropes and confined Villa to a worrying third consecutive defeat. Last season Carla Ward’s side lost just seven times in the league but, without the injured Kenza Dali and suspended Kirsty Hanson, they are struggling to create chances for last season’s top scorer Rachel Daly. SW

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