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5 Things We Learned From Arsenal's 1-3 Win Over Orlando City

5 Things We Learned From Arsenal's 1-3 Win Over Orlando City

Arsenal beat Orlando City 1-3 in the second game of their US pre-season tour. Here's five things we learned.

Arsenal ran out 3-1 victors in the second game of their American tour last night, and with many talking points arising, what did we learn?

1 - Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Jesus can start together

Despite spending just half the match on the pitch together against Orlando City, the synergy between the two forwards was clear. 

The last twelve months has seen exponential growth in Nketiah’s all-round game, transforming himself from a goal-mouth poacher into a complete forward capable of operating both centrally and out wide.

This interchangeability bodes well for a future partnership. If both can become regular fixtures in the starting XI, then Arteta’s side will no doubt improve upon the 61 goals scored in the league last season. 

2 - Arsenal's reserve defensive options are not good enough

The opening 45 minutes from the defensive line, particularly Nuno Tavares and Pablo Mari, was a Shakespearean tragedy in football form.

Orlando City’s forward line found themselves able to escape in behind with consummate ease.

Arsenal were given a warning when Michel ran into acres of space, prompting a fine 1v1 save from Aaron Ramsdale.

However, such luck didn’t continue, as a long ball in behind the Portuguese left back resulted in an equaliser, leading the Gunners keeper to berate his defence, shouting “f*cking switch on!”.

3 - A mass exodus of players is still needed

Looking through the squad for the game, the amount of names that seem destined to leave the club is staggeringly high. 

Mari, Maitland-Niles, Tavares and Pepe were in the starting XI, whilst the likes of Bellerin, Balogun and Nelson were on the bench. 

This is without referencing Bernd Leno and Lucas Torriera, both of whom are subject to great interest. 

You can nearly field a full starting XI of players heading for the exit door, and can complete that XI if you include players who perhaps should be heading for the exit door.

4 - Zinchenko is destined to become a fan favourite

Despite the action that unravelled on the pitch, all the pre-match and post-match comments were about the Ukrainian, who was pictured in the stands alongside Technical Director Edu. 

The fans were snapping pictures, eager to get a word with the 25-year-old, enthralled by the prospect of what he can bring to the club.

For Arteta, he shares this giddy optimism:

“I know the player really well, he's an exceptional footballer and he is someone that is going to bring as well another competitive edge to that dressing room.”

“He can play in both defence and midfield. He was a natural number ten early in his career and we converted him into a left-back which can do a lot of things that we want in our way of playing.”

“That versatility is something that is going to be important for the team because we have players in that position who are more specific full-backs, so I'm really happy."

Arsenal fans will be quietly optimistic they get to see their new signing against Chelsea this Sunday.

5 - International fans deserve all the respect in the world

Now this one isn’t strictly relevant to the football, but nonetheless deserves a mention.

Due to adverse weather conditions, the game didn’t kick off until 1.30am GMT, leaving British Gooners torn between getting some sleep in before an early rise for work, or watching their favourite team.

Many chose the former, and few could blame them. However, the fact international fans can wake up all the most absurd hours every week, sometimes twice a week, is a testament to their commitment and unwavering support.

Any argument that fans that haven’t attended a game aren’t true fans is insanity, and the toll foreign fans take upon their body should be proof in and of itself. 

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Arsenal, MLS, Mikel Arteta, Gabriel Jesus, Eddie Nketiah