How much we have waited for an Arsenal action to be seen after a rather dull end of 2012/13 season. We have had FIFA and its confederation cup competition to keep our hearts but we all waited for the Gunners to bring us the real excitement.
So enter: 1st July 2013, Preseason
The preseason began with the Arsenal travelling to Asia with a 24 man squad without some players like Gervinho, Vermaleen and Carzola for either of illness, injury or rest. Young gunners were added to the team amongst which were Chuba Akpom, Chuks Aneke, Gnabry, Eisfeld, Ryo, Olsoon and Zelalam.
The Asia Tour began in Jakarta with a 7-0 thrashing of the Indonesian XI. Olivier Giroud scored twice as Arsenal kicked off their Asia tour with a comfortable victory over the Indonesia Dream Team. Theo Walcott converted Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s lay-off to give the tourists a half-time lead, Chuba Akpom opened his account for the first team and Giroud came off the bench to net twice in the space of three minutes before Lukas Podolski, Kris Olsson and Thomas Eisfeld all scored late on.
We headed off to Vietnam where we scored another 7. Before the match, “The Running Man” made waves and the gunners were welcomed. A first-half hat-trick from Olivier Giroud propelled Arsenal to their second victory of the Asia Tour at the expense of Vietnam’s national side.
Giroud took his tally to five in just 65 minutes with three more expertly-taken goals – a fifth-minute opener and two just before the break. The goals continued to flow once the Frenchman had departed, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain curling in a sumptuous effort from distance and Chuba Akpom adding a brace before the hour mark. Ignasi Miquel got in on the act before a rapturously-received consolation for Vietnam, scored by substitute Tran Manh Dung.”
Japan was the next destination as we headed to Arsene’s former dug-out. Nagoya Grampus were defeated 3-1 by the gunners with their home boy Ryo scoring from the spot after Oliver Giroud scored at the third minutes. Walcott added the third before Grampus reduced the tally. The game was about Zelalem. You need to watch that guy.
Japan had a double blessing of Arsenal’s visitation as Urawa Reds posed the last hurdle for the gunners to scale over before leaving Asia. The test was tough but a Podolski strike and a Chuba Akpom late goal gave Arsenal a 2-1 win.
In summary, Arsenal played 4 matches, lost none, drew none. They scored 19 goals and conceded just 3. Oliver Giroud scored 6 goals within 7ominutes of playing time while Chuba Akpom had 4 goals to his name.
Best Players of the Asia Tour: Oliver Giroud, Thomas Rosicky, Gedion Zelalem and Everyone.
Discoveries: Gedion Zelalem and Chuba Akpom. Would they fit in Wenger’s 2013/14 plan?
Questions: Chuks Aneke and his role at the back: this was chance for the young forward to show us his attacking skills but he was deployed at the back. Sagna and his Central Back role: arent we getting a new CB? Is Rosicky getting younger: we need to renew his contract. He wishes to retire at Arsenal, grant him his wish. Bergkamp was the last to do so.
If you dont know, Joel Campbell has gone on loan again. according to arsenl.com ,The 21-year-old Costa Rican attacker, who joined Arsenal from Deportivo Saprissa in August 2011, moves to the Greek champions to gain further first-team experience. He has previously completed season-long loans with Real Betis in 2012/13 and FC Lorient in 2011/12
I leave you with this letter to Arsene Wenger: “Don’t Drop Ollie G!!”
Emirates Cup’s Next
As for Nigeria, Keshi has continued his good works by qualifying the home based super eagles to their first ever CHAN Nations cup after 3 trials. They lost 2-0 to the Ivoirens on Saturday but had led 4-1 from the first leg.
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