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Arsenal vs Chelsea a few quick Community Shield thoughts

  • The first silverware of the season has been handed out, whether or not it can be called a major trophy depends if you are an Arsenal fan or not as they are the 2017 Community Shield winners
  • But ultimately Arsene Wenger has once again got the better of Antonio Conte
  • In the four encounter they have had in charge of their respective clubs, Wenger is now 3-1 ahead in terms of victories
  • And has also won two trophies to Conte’s one
  • In all fairness the trophy that the former Italian manager has won carries more weight due to the fact that it is the Premier League that is in the Stamford Bridge trophy cabinet right now
  • But it was another happy Wembley outing for The Gunners at the expense of their capital city rivals
  • Going into the game the story was the battle of the two new strikers with Alexander Lacazette and Alvaro Morata the record signings for Arsenal and Chelsea respectively
  • The story did not perhaps live up to top billing as the French international drew a blank while his Spanish counterpart started on the bench
  • That said Lacazette’;s performance was impressive especially as there was no Alexis Sanchez or Mesut Ozil in the Arsenal lineup
  • There may not have been any goals it was an encouraging performance from the man that has been charged with leading the line this season
  • In fairness it was a first half of little fanfare as both teams felt each other out
  • Per Mertesacker would get more than that though as he draw first blood thanks to a collision, one that would see him replaced with Bosnian Sead Kolasinac
  • Victor Moses would break the deadlock just minutes after the restart, it was his anticipation from Gary Cahill header into the box that was rewarded with the game’s opening goal
  • Last season’s league winners looked in control and then looked to Morata to come on and secure the game
  • Unfortunately though he would have an afternoon to forget
  • The one real chance he had on goal he managed to blaze over much to the delight of the Arsenal fans behind the goal
  • There was certainly an element of ring rust to the former Real Madrid forward but you get the feeling that will soon burn off
  • Antonio Conte will have to decide whether or not to continue with Michy Batshuyai up top and leave his star signing on the bench once again
  • He will however be grateful that suspensions do not carry over from the Charity Shield as Pedro was sent off in what was arguably the turning point of the contest
  • The former Barcelona man was high on Mohamed Elneny as he raked the Egyptian’s Achilles with his studs.
  • This was right in front of Bobby Madeley and he had no other option but to send Pedro to the stands
  • And just to add insult to injury, Arsenal would equalise from the resulting free kick
  • The ball was lofted in perfectly to the back post and Kolasinac has undoubtedly endeared himself to the Arsenal faithful as he headed past Thibault Courtois to level proceedings
  • And with no extra time it meant that penalties were looming large
  • Not just that though, they were ABBA penalties
  • Meaning that both teams were going to have to take a chance before the winner takes it all (sorry)
  • Instead of the usual A.B format, it now goes ABBAABBAAB – I think, to be honest I’m not too sure
  • The penalties were as follows
  • Cahill – Scored
  • Walcott – Scored
  • Monreal – Scored
  • Courtois – Ballooned over the bar
  • Morata – Miles Wide
  • Oxlade Chamberlain – Scored
  • Giroud – Match Point Scored
  • Whether this new penalty format is better or not remains to be seen
  • But there will certainly be no complaints from Arsenal
  • The only crumb on comfort that Chelsea can take is that no Community Shield winner has won the league since 2009 when Manchester United would win the domestic curtain raiser
  • A bad omen for Arsenal?

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