Arsenal: Mana Iwabuchi wins goal of the month as men’s team struggle to score

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Mana Iwabuchi has won Arsenal’s goal of the month award for August after she scored a stunning effort against PSV.

Arsenal eased past PSV 3-0 last month in a qualifying match for the Women’s Champions League. Japanese forward Iwabuchi scored twice during the match, with her first goal earning widespread praise.

Iwabuchi received the ball from Beth Mead’s corner, before turning, finding space, and curling it into the back of PSV’s net.

Her effort was nominated for Arsenal’s goal of the month award for August. Vivianne Miedema’s goal against PSV was also shortlisted, alongside strikes against FC Okzhetpes from Beth Mead and Nikita Parris.

The nomination list noticeably lacked goals from the men’s team, however. The side failed to score in the Premier League in August, losing 2-0 to Brentford, 2-0 to Chelsea and 5-0 to Manchester City.

The men’s team only hit the back of the net against West Brom in the second round of the Carabao Cup. As a result, three efforts from this match made the goal of the month shortlist, including strikes from Bukayo Saka, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.

Iwabuchi’s goal won the monthly accolade after receiving 64 percent of the public vote. Aubameyang obtained 11 percent of the vote, while Miedema got 10 percent.

Fans have expressed their delight over the outcome, with one social media user writing: "Glad she won. Her goal was of the highest class. Too often one of the men win this when they don't actually have the best goal."

Iwabuchi joined Arsenal over the summer, moving from fellow Women’s Super League side Aston Villa. The Japanese star has impressed so far, scoring three goals in two Champions League qualifying matches in pre-season.

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She has also featured for the Gunners in their two opening matches of the Women’s Super League. The 28-year-old set up Beth Mead for Arsenal’s third goal as they defeated Chelsea 3-2 last week, before playing for 30 minutes on Sunday during her side’s 4-0 victory against Reading.

Teammate Katie McCabe was full of praise for Iwabuchi at the start of the season, telling GiveMeSport Women: "She's just a class player, and to have those sort of additions in this team is really, really amazing.

"She'll obviously bring competition within the midfield and most attacking areas as well, which will make everyone have to be at the top of their game. She's a real gem, off the pitch as well, she's just one of a kind isn't she."

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