Result: Arsenal 5-1 PSG
Competition: International Champions Cup (pre-season)
Date: July 28th 2018
Venue: Singapore Sports Hub
Arsenal scored four second half goals against a very young PSG side in Singapore to run out 5-1 winners in the final game of the tour. Goals from Mesut Ozil, Eddie Nketiah, Rob Holding and two for Alexandre Lacazette saw off the Ligue 1 champions who were without a host of their first team stars.
Arsenal starting XI
Leno, Bellerin, Mustafi, Sokratis, Kolasinac, Guendouzi, Elneny, Ozil (c), Mkhitaryan, Iwobi, Aubameyang
1′ – that kit
It’s our first look at the third kit. I think the word insipid springs to mind. It also looks like a very heavy pitch.
3′ – Commentator hilarity
Haha, Premier Sports commentator says Guendouzi might be useful as he could inform Unai Emery about some of the young players at PSG. Forgetting, of course, where Emery was manager before Arsenal.
8′ – High press
It’s what everyone is expecting from Arsenal this season, but this young PSG side are the ones doing most of the pressing, giving the Gunners no time to dwell on the ball in their own half.
9′ – First attempt
It comes from PSG, a shot from the right hand side of our box curls wide, Leno looked like he had it covered.
12′ – Ooooh
Arsenal take a short corner from our right, Ozil whips it in and Mustafi’s header flies beyond the far post.
14′ – ⚽ Goooooal Arsenal! 1-0
Aubameyang got down the right hand side with real pace after a good pass from Mkhitaryan, he crossed it to the back post, and Ozil was there to slot it home first time with his right foot. Nice move, and a goal somewhat against the run of play so far.
18′ – Referee!
Ozil wants a penalty, having been clattered from behind in the box, but the official plays on.
23′ – Oooooooh!
Lovely passing again from Arsenal sends Iwobi down the inside left channel, he drives into box and has a pop but Buffon makes a good save. From the corner, Bellerin has a pop from distance which crashes into a crowd of defenders. Then Arsenal have the ball in the net but Mkhitaryan is wrongly given offside in the build-up.
26′ – Just wide
PSG have another pop via Toufiqui, again Leno looks to have it covered but it fizzes just wide of his far post.
29′ – What a save
Huge save from Buffon as Aubameyang looked like he was going to make it 2-0. He took down an inch-perfect long pass from Guendouzi, cut inside the defender and shot with his left foot, but the vastly experienced keeper stood up well and made a great stop.
34′ – Hey Leno
Ozil very careless with a step-over inside our final third which presented the ball to PSG, Weah smashed a shot on target but the Arsenal keeper was more than equal to it, parrying the ball away. The French side aren’t creating much as it is, so presenting them a chance like that was unnecessary.
39′ – No Weah through
PSG work it down the right hand side, there’s a low cross to the near post, Weah tries a flick and there’s just enough there from the Arsenal defence to see it out without troubling Leno. That’s followed a few minutes later by an effort from Nkunku which goes over the bar.
44′ – Another Buffon save
This time it’s from Mkhitaryan, again the build-up from Arsenal is good, finding the Armenian in a very good position on the edge of the box, but after a good touch and then cutting inside the defender he fired his shot straight at the Italian.
45 +1′ – Mustafi wide
From a free kick out on our right, Mustafi climbs highest but heads wide when he really should have hit the target. The referee’s whistle goes and Arsenal take the lead into the break.
Half-time: Arsenal 1-0 PSG
On the basis of the chances created, it’s a deserved lead for the Gunners but it wouldn’t be unfair to suggest they’ve been wasteful at times. More efficiency with their finishing would see them in a much more comfortable position at this point, and that’s something that plagued us in the past. Perhaps something for the new boss to focus on as he continues to work with his players.
Emery made three changes the break as Emi Martinez, Aaron Ramsey, and Lacazette replaced Leno, Iwobi and Elneny.
51′ – Save Martinez!
From a PSG free kick, the Arsenal keeper flies across his goal to get a good hand on a goalbound effort. Arsenal clear and break and then:
52′ – Yellow card Lassana Diarra
Aubameyang chopped down by the former Arsenal man, referee issues the card.
55′ – Chance PSG
Sokratis poor as the ball is played over the top, Weah shoots for the near post, Martinez blocks it out for a corner. From there, Rabiot wins a header which Guendouzi clears.
59′ – Penalty PSG
Kolasinac outdone by the pace of Weah, went to ground, as clear a spot-kick as you’ll see. It was poor defending from a player who must be tired having played the full 90 on Thursday too, which isn’t to excuse the bad defending.
60′ – ⚽ Goal PSG. 1-1
Nkunku steps up to take the penalty, calmly slots home as Martinez dives the other way.
63′ – Last ditch
Great defending from Bellerin at the near post as PSG again threaten from the right via Weah. Mustafi was nowhere near the man, the cross came in but the full back did well to clear.
64′ – Changes
Off: Mustafi, Sokratis, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang, Ozil
On: Smith Rowe, Nelson, Holding, Chambers, Nketiah
67′ – ⚽ GOOOOAALLL Arsenal! 2-1
Smith Rowe makes an immediate impact, taking the ball on the right side and curling in a cross to the near post. Lacazette’s touch isn’t the cleanest but it loops up and in under the bar on the far corner of Buffon’s goal.
69′ – Oooooh
Ramsey should do better, making a great run into the box but rather than shoot with his left foot, he pokes it with his right and it’s easy for Buffon.
73′ – ⚽ GOOOOAALLL Arsenal! 3-1
Arsenal kept the ball moving well from a corner, Kolasinac crossed the back post, Chambers headed back across goal, it fell for Lacazette who nodded it down and in, and although Nketiah was there to make sure, the ball had crossed the line before he got a touch.
74′ – Arsenal subs
Matteo Guendouzi comes off after a good display, replaced by Joe Willock while Ainsley Maitland-Niles comes on for Kolasinac.
78′ – block
Bellerin blocks a Weah shot after misjudging a header which presents the PSG forward with a chance to shoot.
81′ – Almost Eddie
Nketiah picks the ball up on the left, comes back from the byline, cuts inside two defenders and curls a shot towards the far corner but the keeper pushes it away to safety.
87′ – Ooooooooh!
Nelson should make it 4-1, but again Smith Rowe is involved. He plays Ramsey down the left, it comes to Lacazette who rolls it into the path of the young winger but his shot is saved by the feet of the keeper.
88′ ⚽ GOOOOOAALLL Arsenal! 4-1
From the corner, Rob Holding loops a great header up, up, up and over the keeper, it loops over him to add some icing to the Arsenal cake. What a finish!
90′ – Almost there
We’ll have 4 minutes of added time
90 + 3′ – ⚽ GOOOOAALLLL ARSENAL! 5-1.
Nelson rolls the ball through to Nektiah who takes it first time, and although the strike isn’t quite as solid as he’d like, the ball goes beyond the keeper and just inside the far post to make it 5-1.
Full-time. Arsenal 5-1 PSG
Overall a deserved win for the Gunners. You do have to take into account the youth of the PSG side, and the fact it’s pre-season, but nevertheless a useful work-out, and to add some finishing efficiency in the second half after being so wasteful in the first was nice to see. Enjoyable.
Next up, Chelsea in Dublin!