Arsenal starting this preseason match with : Martinez, Chambers, Mustafi, Monreal, Jenkinson, Olayinka, Burton, Kolasinac, Nelson, Saka, Nketiah. So a very young side with a few experienced players.
Captain Monreal with an early error but Mustafi could block the shot and the ball goes out for a throw in. The ref allowing a lot of physical contact in the early minutes. Kolasinac with a cross to Nketiah but an Italian defender can just make contact in front of him. Fiorentina with a break and Martinez with a great save and then Kolasinac can clear the loose ball for a corner. Martinez stops the following attempt on the goal line. Arsenal attack and Kolasinac gives the ball to the middle and Nketiah turns in penalty area around his man and puts the ball in goal. 1-0 to The Arsenal after 16 minutes.
Olaynka with an effort from just outside the penalty area but the ball goes wide. Arsenal with a few scary moments when we give the ball away in our owh half but Kolasinac in the end can head the ball safe in the arms of Martinez. Fiorentina stepping up the battling a bit more with the ref allowing a lot of contact. Nketiah breaks on the left flank on speed and power but his cross is intercepted by the keeper before he can find a teammate. Nelson with a good chance to break away but his pass to Jenkinson was just not good enough so a defender can tackle the ball away. Martinez with a save on the counter from Fiorentina. Well it is not boring.
A great attack starting from in our own half and going from left to right but the final ball from Jenkinson is cleared for a corner. Chambers heads it over. Nketiah clearing the ball in front of our own goal line after an Italian corner. Saponara goes through Burton from behind and gets a well deserved yellow card. Some frustration with the Italian players for having so much trouble with these Arsenal kids? The flag stays down for a Fiorentina player but Martinez with a great stop prevents the equaliser. Fiorentina has another chance but the striker pokes it wide. Arsenal go in at half time with a 1-0 advantage thanks to a well taken goal from Nketiah. There is a drinking pause every 15 minutes by the way because of the hot conditions on the field.
Leno and Lacazette start in the second half in the place of Martinez and Kolasinac who had a strong first half. The ref keeps on allowing all kinds of fouls as in the first half. Leno with a good strong hand when Fiorentina break. Saka with a mistake giving Fiorentina a shot but Leno has no trouble with the low shot. Saka with a shot from outside the penaly but also not really troubling the keeper. Lacazette with a goodshot but then Nelson looked offside when he missed the rebound. The Italian keeper commits a handball foul outside his penalty area and gets a yellow card for it. The younger Arsenal players don’t know the new laws about standing in the defending wall, neither does this ref….. Lacazette shoots over. We get another pause after 60 minutes and Sokratis, Mkhitaryan and Willock enter the field for Saka, Chambers and Olayinka who had another good performance.
Mkhitaryan immediately gets a yellow card as he thought the ref was lenient. Not for him. Mustafi almost runs in to trouble but can clear the ball to Jenkinson who joins the attack and plays a vital role when two Fiorentina players run in to him when standing still and thus making no foul. Mkhitaryan gives the ball to Lacazette who simply roles it to Nketiah and he just does what he does best: score. 2-0 to The Arsenal after 66 minutes. Fiorentina not happy about the rol from Jenkinson but just standing on the field is not a foul.
Jenkinson almost finds a few players unmarked but the ball is diverted in the arms of the keeper. Fiorentina get a free kick but the ball goes well over. Willock with a long run and then being fouled but again nothing given. But he can continue it seems. Giving everyone another moment to drink a bit and cool down.
Half a new Arsenal team standing ready at the side line and Özil, Xhaka, Maitland-NIles, Martinelli, Thompson and Medley come on for Monreal, Nketiah, Mustafi, Burton, Jenkinson, Nelson.
Özil sets up Martinelli but his shot is deflected. Xhaka then loses the ball and almost sets up a Fiorentina chance and forces Maitland-Niles to a foul and a yellow card. The wall diverts the ball for a corner. The ref really had a few strange decisions allowing lots and then calling little fouls. Fiorentina almost with a chance but Medley has a foot in the way. Özil sends Martinelli away and he goes around the last man but his shot goes centimeters wide…shaving the post. Lacazette goes past his man and simply gives the ball to Willock who makes no mistake and a real composed finish makes it 3-0 in the 88th minute.
Still time enough for Xhaka to get a yellow card. Özil with some great skills in the short time he played so far.
Another good performance from the youngsters and the fact all the goals came from our own academy players makes the feeling even better.
Final score 3-0.
Original article: https://untold-arsenal.com/archives/76224