We have been in scintillating form during pre-season, so it was no surprise we beat Sevilla.
The manner of how we brushed aside the Spanish side was however unpredictable.
Yes, it was just pre-season. And yes, we are a week ahead of Sevilla in terms of preparation – La Liga starts a week after the Premier League. But we should celebrate our impressive performance.
Sevilla finished 4th last season in La Liga, and had the best defensive record conceding just 30 goals in 38 games.
They have sold their senior defender Douglas Carlos to Aston Villa and their talented young centre back Jules Kounde didn’t play due to his impending more to Barcelona.
But we scored 6 goals. And they were impressive goals.
The type of goals where you could see the types of attacking situations that we were attempting to manufacture. The attacking patterns that came straight off the training ground.
A hat trick for Gabriel Jesus. Brace for Bukayo Saka and another pre-season goal for Eddie Nketiah.
The front 3 of Jesus, Saka and Martinelli looked versatile and electric. Whilst Martin Odergaard ran the game behind.
Thomas Partey dominated the midfield and Granit Xhaka kept the game ticking.
William Saliba and Gabriel looked solid in defence whilst Ben White and Alex Zinchenko were untroubled as “inverted” full backs.
At one point in the second half, Zinchenko pushed into midfield and we went into a back 3.
All in all a very good performance.
The XI that played was also the XI that faced Chelsea in our last pre-season game. It is also the XI I expect to start against Crystal Palace on Friday.
10-goals in our last 2 preseason games against sides in the Champions League.
That makes it 5 wins from 5 pre-season games – the behind closed door games against Ipswich and Brentford were no more than training matches.
20 goals scored in those 5 games for Arteta’s new attacking Arsenal. 3 clean sheets.
A pre-season that will all get us excited.
We now need to back it up against Palace on the opening game of the season.
Bring on the Premier League.