Mexican waves, foam fingers and a light display - how Bristol backed Lionesses to Arnold Clark Cup win

Over 26,000 fans desceneded on Ashton Gate to watch England’s Lionesses lift the Arnold Clark Cup for the second year running.
England’s Chloe Kelly celebrates after giving her side the lead. England’s Chloe Kelly celebrates after giving her side the lead.
England’s Chloe Kelly celebrates after giving her side the lead.

Doubles from Chloe Kelly and Leah Williamson, alongside goals from Lucy Bronze and an own-goal from Julie Biesman won England the Arnold Clark Cup as Sarina Weigman’s side ran ragged in Bristol, despite a late concellation from Elena Dhont.

England finished the tournament with nine points from a possible nine, beating Italy 2-1 and South Korea 4-0 before this evening, and won their final game in style, demolishing second placed Belgium 6-1 and treating their fans to some great football.

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Before the Lionesses took to the stage, South Korea and Italy went head to head as the other two sides competing in the Arnold Clark Cup. A match ticket gave you access to both fixtures, with the first game taking place at 4.45 and finishing about an hour before England vs Belgium.

Many fans chose to turn up early and watch the first game, and were treated to an injury time winner for Italy, as they finished third in the tournament.

The atmosphere was built before the game with a DJ based in the corner of the stadium, getting everyone inside Ashton Gate ready for the match ahead. The Lionesses were clearly as excited as the visitors to Ashton Gate this evening, running out the gates and opening the scoring inside the first 15 minutes.

From that point on they never looked back and limited their Belgian opponents to just one shot on target, an Elana Dhont wonder-strike in the 91st minute.

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The atmosphere inside the stadium was electric, and England were greeted with roars and cheers of support whenever they advanced up the pitch. The fans were treated to a fantastic game as well, with Sarina Weigman’s side netting six and winning the trophy for the second year on the spin in style.

It was a rampant second half performance for England, as they seemed just too good for their opponents with 70% posession and 17 shots on the Belgian goal - in comparison to the away side’s one.

There were dots of Belgian fans around the stadium, but the vast majority were there for the Lionesses and those fans were in uproar when Belgium’s Kassandra Missipo squared up to Kiera Walsh, and seemed to shout something in the face of the midfielder.

In true footballing style, a mexican wave made several runs around the stands, and with their side in control and four goals up, the England fans were clearly enjoying themselves. This was echoed when the stadium lit up, with fans putting their phone torches in the air in support of their team and creating a light show in the stands.

Yellow foam fingers were handed out on each entrance, and were seen waving in the air by the end, with Leah Williamson lifting the Arnold Clark Cup and being showered in yellow confetti.

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