By Walter Broeckx
A few changes to the team. Özil drops to the beach and Iwobi starts in his place. Also Xhaka has a slight groin problem and didn’t travel to Manchester. Arsenal starting with 3 central defenders and with 2 players in defensive midfield positions.
Arsenal: Leno, Lichtsteiner, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal, Kolasinac, Torreira, Guendouzi, Iwobi, Aubameyang, Lacazette
On the beach: Cech, Elneny, Ramsey, Ozil, Denis Suarez, Mavropanos, Nketiah
Iwobi losing the ball at the edge of our penalty area and the cross goes to Aguero who scores. 1-0 a-within the first minute. The only thing we can hope is that City does the same as against Newcastle and lose their urge to press for more.
Leno with a good save on a shot from outside the penalty area. Man city score from a free kick that is awarded for an imaginary handball but the goal is correctly ruled out for a clear offside. Arsenal with a first attack Aubameyang tries to find Lacazette but the ball ends up in front of Kolasinac but City can clear for a corner. The ball is given by Torreira, a flick by Monreal at the first post and Koscielny dives it in at the far post. GOAL! 1-1 after 10 minutes.
I have to correct my pre match assumption as we play a back 4 with Kolasinac playing in midfield. 1-1 after 15 minutes.
City pressing Arsenal back. Leno with a good stop on a shot after a corner when we couldn’t clear the ball. Arsenal trying to soak up the pressure and the players working hard to close City down. Arsenal very rarely in the City half. Kolasinac with a shot on a rare attack but he hit the sidenet. Torreira clearing ball but Atkinson got hit and City can attack again but the shot was well over. Still 1-1 after 30 minutes.
A good cross from Lichtsteiner but a defender just in front of Aubameyang who can clear. At the other end Leno with a good catch on a cross. Lacazette with a good deep ball to Aubameyang but the City keeper rushes out his penalty area and can clear the ball. Leno with a hand to divert a dangerous cross and Monreal does the rest to clear. Monreal and Kolasinac combine with the latter having a shot that is pushed out by the keeper. Monreal gives it to Lacazette who could have shot himself but he gives it to Torreira whose shot is blocked. City counter but it only leads to Torreira getting a yellow card for a late foul. Atkinson trying to cut the influence of Torreira a bit? Aubameyang send away by Torreira but his shot is diverted to a corner. Too much room on the right flank for Sterling who sets up a 1-2 and then his cross to Aguero is easily tapped in at the far post. 2-1 after 43 minutes. Just wen Arsenal had a better spell in the match City score.
De Bruyne with a low cross that goes past everyone. 2-1 after 45 minutes.
No changes at half time. City get a free kick but the all ends up in the arms of Leno in the end. City with most of the ball and Leno has to stop a low shot from De Bruyne and is first on the rebound also. A bit later again a good stop on a shot from De Bruyne and then the attacked was stopped for a clear offside after the ball bounced back from Leno. But you can’t let him have that space around the penalty area. A good City attack on our right flank but again Leno stops De Bruyne. A low cross from Kolasinac but the keeper stops it is the only real attack from Arsenal so far. Still 2-1 after 60 minutes.
City with an attack from our right flank and Leno can only push the cross against Aguero who scores his hattrick. 3-1 after 61 minutes.
Gundogan dives to win a penalty throwing himself against a defender and he gets a yellow card for his attempt. After 65 minutes Ramsey comes on for Iwobi and Suarez comes on for Kolasinac. The Spanjard making his debut for Arsenal.
City monopolizing the ball and Arsenal can’t really get an attack starting that goes in to their penalty area. Leno with an excellent stop on a shot from Aguero after a free kick was only half cleared. Mustafi the down after that free kick but he can carry on it seems. But a minute later Mavrapanos comes on for Mustafi after 79 minutes also playing his first minutes this season.
Leno again with an excellent save on a shot. Atkinson not being too bad (didn’t have to ) but still making sure we can’t use our body to create anything. City is allowed to use their body and arms but the shot was straight at Leno. Atkinon continuing to ignore fouls on Arsenal players but the shot from Mahrez goes wide.
Arsenal created nothing in the second half so you can’t expect to win anything in the end. It was as if we played to lose with the smalles margin possible. Suarez will quickly learn that the refs in the PL are completely different than those in Spain. Arsenal lose 3-1 and there is not much more to say.
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