Soccer

Emma Hayes calls out ‘male aggression’ from Jonas Eidevall in League Cup final

The pair had a heated exchange following the full-time whistle.

Jonas Eidevall (left) has been accused of ‘male aggression’ by Emma Hayes (right)
Jonas Eidevall and Emma Hayes Jonas Eidevall (left) has been accused of ‘male aggression’ by Emma Hayes (right) (Nick Potts/PA)

Chelsea boss Emma Hayes called out Arsenal counterpart Jonas Eidevall for what she claimed to be “male aggression” following a touchline fracas with Blues midfielder Erin Cuthbert late in the Gunners’ 1-0 extra-time League Cup final victory.

Eidevall was quick to defend his behaviour, saying the disagreement began with a pre-match decision, favoured by Chelsea, to use a one-ball system in the final instead of Arsenal’s multi-ball preference.

Cuthbert had gone for a throw-in late in extra time when she turned around and walked towards Eidevall – possibly reacting to something the Arsenal boss had said – and the pair exchanged words on the touchline.

Tempers flare between Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall (left) and Chelsea’s Erin Cuthbert towards the end of the match
Chelsea v Arsenal – FA Women’s Continental Tyres League Cup – Final – Molineux Stadium Tempers flare between Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall (left) and Chelsea’s Erin Cuthbert towards the end of the match (Nick Potts/PA)

After the final whistle, decided by a Stina Blackstenius strike 116 minutes into what had been a goalless stalemate, Hayes appeared to shove Eidevall as the two went in for their post-match handshake.

Asked about the Cuthbert incident, the Chelsea manager told BBC Sport: “I think there’s a way to behave on the side of the pitch and, not for the first time… I’ve been in women’s football a long time and I don’t think we should tolerate male aggression like we did today.

“Fronting up or squaring up to a player is something that’s unacceptable. I’ve never been booked in 12 years of my career but I think there’s a way to behave on the touchline. He received a yellow card but perhaps should have been more.”

Eidevall disagreed with Hayes’ assessment of his actions, saying at his post-match press conference: “I don’t think I was aggressive. I think that is irresponsible to label it as that.

“The argument we had before the game. Arsenal wanted a multi-ball system, Chelsea wanted a one-ball system, therefore it was played with a one-ball system.

“That incident, the ball is kicked away and Chelsea wants to take a new ball for a quick throw-in. I said, ‘You guys wanted to play with one ball, now you need to get that ball’.

“Of course, Erin isn’t happy about that. I didn’t say anything more but I think that is how it is.”

He continued: “I think there is a way to behave in the technical area and I think there is a way to behave after a game, being a good winner, a good loser and you need to be responsible in both those situations.

“I am happy with the way I conduct myself then others need to look at themselves in the mirror and see if they are happy with themselves.”