By Walter Broeckx
As exepcted Petr Cech made his first start for Arsenal at the Emirates against Wolfsburg. For the rest another 9 changes with only Özil keeping his place.
Starting team : Cech, Bellerin, Chambers, Gabriel, Monreal, Arteta, Cazorla, Reine-Adelaide, Ozil, Wilshere, Walcott.
Subs: Martinez, Debuchy, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Giroud, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Akpom, Coquelin, Hayden, Iwobi
Cech with a good interception on a low cross from De Bruyne in front of some players storming towards goal. Arsenal with a few good runs on the flank but the final ball not good enough in the opening minutes. Wolfsburg forcing a few corners in a row but nothing really dangerous came from them. But Wolfsburg certainly trying to impose themselves from the start with lots of possession. 0-0 after 15 minutes.
Again Wolfsburg with a few corners and one almost surprised Arsenal but the shot struck Monreal for another corner. Özil then with a great ball to Theo but the keeper blocked the effort in to a corner. Wolfsburg also being dangerous with another low cross that missed everyone. Wilshere releasing Walcott but he needed a bit too much time and a defender could come back on him.
Reine-Adelaide forcing a corner after some nice footwork. Walcott scoring after a great move but he was offside so the goal was rightfully cancelled. Cech being well awake stopping a shot from Bendtern. Klose from Wolfsburg getting a yellow for chopping Wilshere down when a promising attack was on.
Wolfsburg showing the usual force of German football, great technical skills and some impressive pressing all over the pitch. A good attack on the left a low cross from Monreal to Özil but his effort just went behind the far post. Wolfsburg certainly a stronger team than Lyon yesterday.
One change at half time with Akpom coming in for Özil who had already played one hour yesterday. Jack playing a little bit more from the left I had the impression.
A good start from Arsenal and Adelaide running more in the middle was my take on it. Arsenal with a good interception in midfield, nice rounding his opponent and running in to space. Walcott and Akpom made their runs and Adelaide picked out Walcott who took one touch and …. GOAL!!! with the outside of the boot steared it passed the goalkeeper. 1-0 to the Arsenal after 50 minutes.
Arteta with a bad ball giving De Bruyne a shooting chance but his shot went very wide. The Arsenal youngsters upfront working really hard to close down the Wolfsburg players. Adelaide, my God where did Wenger got this boy from (Lens.. I know…) with another great pass to Walcott but this time the keeper had read the situation and was out just in time to kick the ball away.
Wolfsburg with a counter finished with a shot but no real problem for Cech. A great attack from right to left from Arsenal finished with a curling shot hat went just wide. De Bruyne who had been impressive for Wolfsburg went off after that and Kruse came on for the Germans. Seconds later a real test for Cech when the nr. 23 had a fierce low shot but Cech stopped the effort at the expence of a corner. A great stop.
After 62 minutes Ramsey came on for Arteta and Adelaide (what a first match) went off and Oxlade-Chamberlain came on. Oxlade-Chamberlain immediately with a great run, fouled twice, advantage given, pass to Ramsey but his effort flew wide behind the post.
Wolfsburg not giving up and trying to get some attacking momentum going but only a few shots from distance as a result that went wide. Gabriel dominating the aerial duels in an impressive way. The Ox almost away again but he just couldn’t get past the last defender. Bellerin with a strong run to Akpom but the keeper could stop his low effort. Naldo then bringing down Akpom when he was just outside the penalty area at the cost of a yellow card. Santi with the free kick but the keeper could stop the effort.
With some 15 minutes to Theo went off and Giroud came on and Jack went off and Hayden came on. Akpom with a promising run but just couldn’t come to a shot but then won it back and the ball came to Hayden and the Wolfsburg keeper had to make a fine stop. Hayden then with a strong tackle. Bendnter came off for Wolfsburg and got a nice applause from the Emirates.
Arnold and Santi with some pushing and shoving and both getting cautioned after Arnold was a bit over aggressive int the challenge. Arnold then taking down Ramsey.. it looks like he has a bit of an attitude problem. Monreal got a yellow for a few attempted fouls in the last minute of normal time. Akpom with a possible counter with two teammates but he gave the ball to the only defender. And that was the last big chance of the match.
Final score Arsenal – Wolfsburg : 1-0.
Arsenal won the match against a good Wolfsburg team that will start their season next week just like Arsenal so a good way to know where we stand.
Arsenal won the Emirates cup with 13 points and with 7 goals scored and 0 conceded. Winning the Emirates cup is nice but not the main objective of the season. But the second time we play for a trophy this season and second time we won.
We have seen some amazing youngsters stepping up like Iwobi, Adelaide and Akpom who we knew before of course. We have seen that the older legs ar ready. And the team can play free flowing when allowed but also can dig and work hard when needed like against Wolfsburg.
Next week is of course a very big test with the Community Shield. But the team seems ready to battle for every match.