Arsenal faced Barcelona in the last game of their US tour and came away with an impressive win, putting five goals past the champions of Spain.
Conceding three will make Mikel Arteta angry and I’m sure that the players will work hard on the training ground before the last pre-season games, against AS Monaco and Manchester City.
It was Barcelona’s first pre-season outing and Xavi complained about the intensity of the Arsenal team. It was a weird comment in my opinion, as some Barcelona players, namely Ronald Araujo, put in some shocking tackles.
However, those are the requirements of playing under Arteta. He doesn’t accept low intensity and the win was well-deserved against a solid, if slightly rusty opponent.
5 standout players from Arsenal’s 5-3 victory over Barcelona
It was a great performance from the whole team but some players in particular stood out.
1. Leandro Trossard
Without a doubt, the main standout performer was a Belgian man by the name of Leandro Trossard. He scored two very good goals and was a constant thorn in the Barcelona side.
With every game Trossard plays, his quality becomes more and more evident and it seems like he is not happy being a back-up. Given how he has played in pre-season, Arteta almost has no choice but to find a way to fit him into the side. If not, Trossard needs to be the first sub brought on every game.
He plays in such an intelligent way, as evidenced in the game against Barça. He makes very good decisions on the ball and rarely wastes the ball or a chance.
His first goal was brilliant attacking play, fixing the defender before making a half-space for a left footed-shot that finds its way to the opposite bottom corner. His second goal was a snapshot finish from a great Kieran Tierney cross.
Trossard showed what he could do centrally in the game and was the difference-maker in the end. As good as he is out wide, in the centre of the pitch he can have a devastating impact. Arteta may even be thinking of employing him in the centre of that attack, replacing Gabriel Jesus.
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