Sunday, 10 August 2014

Arsenal ease past City + Vermaelen Leaves

We got out first look at what seemed to be a strong team this afternoon as Arsenal breezed past a City team that never really got going. Arsenals line up included 3 of our 4 new signings: Chambers, Debuchy and Sanchez.

Throughout the first half Arsenal were the only side in it. The slick passing game was causing the inexperienced City defence problems. In the middle of the park the gunners bossed the play, preventing Toure and co. from getting going. Then the deadlock was broken. Sanogo played the ball along the front of the box and as Boyata flattened Ramsey the ball fell to the Spaniard Cazorla who flashed the ball past Caballero to put us 1 up.

20 minutes later Ramsey got in on the Wembley action, Sanogo again held the ball up well and slid it across to Ramsey. After a deft touch to lift the ball over the leg of Nastacic, Aaron fired the ball across Caballero again to make it 2-0. City got slightly better in the second half and Arsenal brought on 3 players: Giroud, the OX and Monreal. Sanchez, Koscielny and Sanogo made way. As Arsenal played their way back into control of the midfield the ball broke to Giroud who after teeing up a shot, crashed it past the City keeper from all of 25 yards. A truly great goal which rounded off a very nice performance.

Of course theres little point reading into this game as both sides were without key players, it appears that the only issue is that Koscielny has a minor Achilles problem and may miss the season opener against Palace. Aside from that there were brilliant performances from Chambers who I actually thought should have been MOTM and Debuchy. Considering Alexis Sanchez is still not fully ready according to Wenger he certainly looks like a very exciting player and I can't wait to see him properly this season.

In other news Thomas Vermaelen has left the club for Barcelona. I can't say I'm surprised but it still saddens me a little to think we're letting him go. However the captain featured very few times last season and for a player like himself he needs game time. Whether he'll get that in Catalonia I'm not sure but fair do's to him. He conducted himself phenomenally well over the last couple of difficult seasons for him and his message to the Arsenal fans and family was pure class:

After 5 years at Arsenal - and the last 2 years a proud captain too - it's time for me to move on. The club, the team, the fans, the manager, the staff and other employees, you all made me feel at home at both the training ground and the Emirates Stadium. It was a wonderful time and I feel blessed I've had the opportunity to be a part of such a great club. There have been so many wonderful games and experiences, with lifting the FA Cup as an absolute highlight. I would like to thank you all for your support, it was a huge honour to be a Gunner!

I wish Thomas all the best at Barcelona because a player of his quality and class deserves to play at the highest level for as long as possible. Wenger said earlier in the window is Tommy V left that he'd bring in a replacement so let's hope he does just that. Until next weekend when the Premier League season kicks off, have a great week.