Friendly match : Angers – Arsenal : 1-1 Final score (3-4 on penalties)

By Walter Broeckx

At first I thought I was at a concert as there was a rock band playing live when the teams came out in a strange stadium that had one side of the ground open. I think they are going to build a new stand on that side.

The starting line up: Martinez, Chambers, Mustafi, Medley, Monreal, Guendouzi, Burton, Martinelli, John-Jules, Nelson, Nketiah.

Subs: Macey, Sokratis, Thompson, Olayinka, Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Mkhitaryan, Willock, Aubameyang.

Jeff Reine-Adelaide plays for Angers.

Arsenal a bit sloppy on the ball in their own half in the opening 5 minutes so Angers having most of the ball and in the Arsenal half. The ref is a bit blind on one eye I think as every contact from Arsenal is punished but not the other way round. Not really helpful for the youn forwards and midfield.  A simple ball through the middle of the Arsenal defence brings a striker from Angers alone in front of Martinez and he rounds him and scores in the empty net. 1-0 after 13 minutes.

The young players upfront look a bit lost up front and don’t manage to set up a good attack. Ref still refuses to give fouls on Arsenal players. Nketiah standing isolated on an Island and could not be found. I really don’t like to moan about refs in a friendly but this is really funny in a way that Arsenal players are permitted nothing and Angers players go down like being shot even when nothing happened but get a foul. A goal from another free kick is canceled out for offside. A cross from Mustafi is headed backwards by Martinelli and goes just wide with the keeper stranded. The first real Arsenal attack that lead to something.  Martinez with a good stop on a header but it was offside so it didn’t really matter. Finally good attack right at the end of the first half but we can’t find a cross from a promising position. The youngsters up front where no match for the stronger French defenders and didn’t get the support they needed from our midfield. But with so many youngsters on the field this is something that can happen. 1-0 down at half time.

Sokratis, Xhaka, Willock, Maitland-Niles, Thompson looking ready to come on at half time. Chambers, Medley, Monreal, Burton and John-Jules were taken off. Guendouzi with a good cross that is not finished by Martinelli and Nketiah but the ball ends up in front of Nelson who fires it home. 1-1 after 50 minutes.

Mustafi with a good block after a penetrating run from Reine-Adelaide. A much better and stronger Arsenal in the second half with a better midfield with Xhaka and Willock so we can keep the ball.  A free kick from Nelson is headed over. Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan comes in for Nketiah and Guendouzi after 61 minutes.

The ref decides that it is time to give a little hand to Angers and gives a few decisions in favour much to the disgust of Xhaka who tells what he thinks of it. Martinelli with an effort after a cross from Nelson but a defender blocks his shot. Willock gets a yellow card for a tackle that would have been judged no foul in the PL. Aubemeyang stretches for a ball after a free kick but can’t direct the ball towards goal. A bit later Aubameyang scores but he was clear offside. Nelson went down in that incident and needs treatment. Olayinka comes in his place after 81 minutes.  And a minute later Aubameyang misses from close range after a good shot from Martinelli that the keeper coukdn’t keep in his hands.

Aubameyang with a good dribble lays it off to Martinelli but his shot is blocked  and the ball hobbles to the keeper. Maitland-NIles with soms neet but dangerous footwork close to our penalty area. The ref then finds another reason to show a yellow card against an Arsenal player. Aubameyang with an effort from outside the penalty area in the last minute but the shot went well wide. 1-1 after 90 minutes.

A better performance in the second half where we should have won the match but our finishing was still in pre-season mode I think. With some better players around them the younsters performed better. The first half team was too inexperienced to perform on the night.

Oh there will be a penalty shoot out for god knows what reason. Maitland-Niles scores. 0-1 Angers also score. 1-1. Willock next up and he scores. 1-2. For a moment it looked as if he was going to take it with his left foot. Angers also score. 2-2. Xhaka next for Arsenal and he scores. 2-3. But Angers also score. 3-3. Aubameyang next for Arsenal and he also scores. 3-4. Well the penalty takers are doing an excellent job so far wit no misses. Oops Kanfa from Angers shoots the ball almost over the stands. Mkhitaryan up next for Arsenal and he does the same. Still 3-4 with one penalty left for Angers. Reine-Adelaide is taking it for Angers but Martinez knew him from his Arsenal time and stops the effort. So we win 3-4 on penalties.


2 Replies to “Friendly match : Angers – Arsenal : 1-1 Final score (3-4 on penalties)”

  1. I’m glad you kept your TV on Walter. I had no idea there were penalties and the commentator didn’t say “and so we go to penalties” as they normally do. So it finished and I turned the TV off.

    Only to find you were more alert than me.

    Ah well, at least I got tomorrow’s article sketched out.

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