Arsenal concluded their US tour in style as they beat Barcelona 5-3 in LA on Wednesday night.
The Gunners fell behind early but they quickly responded through the excellent Bukayo Saka, who finished beyond Marc-Andre ter Stegen after the ball rather fortuitously fell to him in the Barcelona box.
Arsenal then went on to have the better of the opening period, but a deflected Raphinha free kick meant they fell behind for a second time. Kai Havertz, though, restored parity before the break.
Xavi completely reshuffled his pack for the second half while Mikel Arteta made just one change, with the Arsenal boss’ substitutions arriving in drips and drabs after the restart.
While the La Liga champions threatened more regularly in the second period and twice hit the woodwork, a pair of fine Leandro Trossard strikes saw Arsenal take full control of the contest. Barcelona eventually grabbed the second-half goal they deserved through Ferran Torres late on, but Fabio Vieira quickly restored Arsenal’s two-goal advantage with a fierce strike from distance.
Arsenal 5-3 Barcelona player ratings
Vieira’s finish meant the contest ended 5-3 in the Gunners’ favour. Here are the Arsenal player ratings from the win.
Goalkeeper & Defenders
Aaron Ramsdale (GK) – 5/10 – Unlucky to concede the first, but he was somewhat culpable for Raphinha’s free-kick finding the back of the net despite the nasty deflection.
Ben White (RB) – 4/10 – A tempestuous showing from White who never got a grip of things defensively down his flank. Booked in the first half for persistent fouling and Ansu Fati had success against him in the second period.
William Saliba (CB) – 6.5/10 – Not so imperious when he stepped up to disrupt proceedings but was excellent at covering the space in behind the Arsenal defence. Great with the ball.
Gabriel (CB) – 6/10 – An error-free showing from the Brazilian after Saturday’s mishap.
Jurrien Timber (LB) – 6.5/10 – Arsenal’s new chameleon was this time deployed off the left flank and he had no qualms settling in. The Dutchman, who quickly imposed himself physically on proceedings, is a serious option for Arteta across the back four.
Continued on the next slide…