Arsenal claim Man City bragging rights but Arteta will be wary of Klopp mistake

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Arsenal claim Man City bragging rights but Arteta will be wary of Klopp mistake
Arsenal claim Man City bragging rights but Arteta will be wary of Klopp mistake

Now then - you know what they did last summer.

Manchester City’s Wembley defeat to Liverpool 12 months ago had many believing the Pep Guardiola effect had deserted the Sky Blues, that Erling Haaland would struggle in the Premier League and that the Reds were set for title domination.

So, few fans of the Treble winners will have left London on Sunday night fearing for their prospects over the next 10 months. In fact, when will we ever learn that the result of the Community Shield is no indicator whatsoever of the title destination?

Only twice in the last 10 years has the winning team gone on to become champions of England. Both times it was City. So yes, the easy thing would be to wonder whether the loss of Ilkay Gundogan and Riyad Mahrez, both of whom know where the goal is, could prove City’s undoing this season.

But why, if you are of a City persuasion, would you focus on that and the fact that Arsenal were lucky to escape to victory? Or the fact that City were even more potent when Golden Boot holder Haaland went off with 26 minutes to go?

Chelsea complete record-breaking Enzo Fernandez transfer after deadline day rush rriddqikeiqtkinvChelsea complete record-breaking Enzo Fernandez transfer after deadline day rush

Or the fact that 21-year-old Cole Palmer, whose stunning strike broke the deadlock with 13 minutes left, is set for an exciting campaign?

Or the fact that City have £77million centre-back Josko Gvardiol to add to the team with the joint-best defence last season? Yes, Arsenal should take a psychological boost from edging this. Mikel Arteta’s team had come out second best in each of the previous seven meetings between the two sides.

Arsenal claim Man City bragging rights but Arteta will be wary of Klopp mistakeMikel Arteta saw his Arsenal side win the Community Shield on Sunday (AP)

Their big summer signings, Declan Rice, Kai Havertz and Jurrien Timber, all started. But while Timber impressed, surging up and down the left flank, £105m Rice found himself drifting out too wide while Havertz blew two big opportunities to score.

The first came 26 minutes in when Havertz turned his defender to get his shot away - only to see keeper Stefan Ortega save with his legs. The second came five minutes before the break when Havertz should have tucked away Bukayo Saka’s superb cut-back from the byline - only to see Ortega keep it out magnificently.

Enter Palmer, a 64th-minute replacement for Haaland who’d been silenced by Gabriel and William Saliba. Classy Timber had already come off and his replacement, Kieran Tierney, was caught cold. Palmer cut inside the Scot and unleashed an outstanding drive around Aaron Ramsdale and into the top corner.

Ramsdale did better five minutes later, denying substitute Phil Foden from close range. He also saved superbly at his near post when Rodri tried to head in from a corner.

And if David Raya really is to arrive from Brentford to take his place he will have a fight on his hands. Because those saves proved crucial. Deep into the eight minutes of stoppage time - extended because of head wounds to Kyle Walker and Thomas Partey - Arsenal equalised.

Substitute Leandro Trossard’s shot cannoned off Manuel Akanji who knew nothing about it and flew in. In the penalty shoot out, Martin Odegaard, Trossard, Saka all scored while Kevin de Bruyne - a late substitute - and Rodri missed with only Bernardo Silva hitting the target.

Another late entry, Fabio Viera, sealed it to keep the trophy in north London. The only trophy that matters, however, is still in Manchester.

Darren Lewis

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