Some could say it was refreshing to see Chelsea lined up on a 4-2-3-1 rather than the usual 3-4-3 scheme. But any goodwill from this will be gone once we see how Chelsea have been at their best even as they weigh in in their usual pre-season rust.
Arsenal were the best team on the pitch from the start and they continued to dominate throughout the first half. With more accurate passes, better movement on and off the ball, and the Blues’ inability to figure out how to fill in the gaps in the defensive quadruple, the Gunners were easily able to find results via Gabriel Jesus and Martin Odegaard in the 15th and 36th minutes, respectively.
Coming back to 3-4-3 in the second half, Chelsea were much better. Playing with a familiar tactic helped the team as much as Arsenal were not keen to score as they were in the first half, with the Blues controlling the ball but not doing enough to create chances against their opponents tonight.
And while Arsenal did little else in the second half, a strong enough push from Arsenal was enough to give them a third goal tonight. Bukayo Saka scored in the rebounding net after two consecutive saves from Mendy.
Unfortunately that wasn’t all for us. From a cross from Cédric, Sambi Lokonga scored Arsenal’s fourth goal with a free-kick in the last minute of the match.
- Eleventh first half (4-2-3-1): Mendy | James, Shaloba, Thiago Silva, Emerson | Gallagher, Jorginho (c) | Mount, Sterling, Havertz | Werner
- Back to 3-4-3 at the start of the first half, with Malang Sar, Thiago and Cesar Azpilicueta in the line of defense, and Reese James and Marcos Alonso in the center back. Christian Pulisic, Mateo Kovacic, Michy Batshuayi, Hakim Ziyech, Ethan Ampadu, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Kalidou Koulibaly were the ones who collected the subs in the second half
- Timo Werner always tries his best, but some days his best is just not good enough for us
- Trevoh Shalobe was having a hot day on the field before leaving the pitch due to an injury. Hope everything is fine with him!
- Conor Gallagher was (deservedly) the subject of much praise in his first pre-season game, but his brilliance waned against Charlotte as well as today against Arsenal. We haven’t completely given up hope, but this was still very difficult to comprehend
- Hello Kaleido!
- NEXT: Udinese at the Friuli Stadium in Udine, Italy, last pre-season game
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