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Arsenal edge Manchester City on penalties to win Community Shield

Ramsdale heroics earn Gunners important win

Arsenal defeated Manchester City 4-1 on penalties to defeat them and secure the 2023 FA Community Shield after the match ended 1-1 in regulation time.

Treble winners Manchester City were up against league runners-up Arsenal in their curtain-raiser for the 2023-24 Premier League season.

Both sides fielded debutants, with Arsenal starting the trio of Jurrien Timber, Kai Havertz and Declan Rice, and City starting Mateo Kovacic. Fellow summer signing Josko Gvardiol was left out of the Matchday squad for the Citizens at Wembley.

City bossed the possession in the opening exchanges, knocking the ball around confidently without causing any real problems for the Gunners’ rearguard, a trend that was maintained for most of the first half.

Arsenal had the two best chances of the first half, with former Chelsea ace Havertz spurning both chances to open the scoring for the Gunners at Wembley.

The second half was quite flat, as well, until both managers turned to their respective benches. Manchester City threw on Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden and Cole Palmer to strengthen their attack after Erling Haaland was limited to only 13 touches all game.

The substitutions paid dividends shortly after as the Citizens took the lead in style after 77 minutes. Foden carried the ball from deep before attempting a long switch which was intercepted by Arsenal left-back Kieran Tierney, but De Bruyne headed the ball into the path of 21-year-old star Palmer, who curled an impressive effort into the far corner to open the scoring.

The European champions tried to pile on the pressure after opening the scoring, with Aaron Ramsdale pulling off a number of important stops to keep his side in the game.

Arsenal needed a huge slice of luck to equalise in the final minute of time added on as their persistence finally paid off. Substitute Leandro Trossard took a shot which deflected very heavily of Manuel Akanji, wrong-footing goalkeeper Stefano Ortega. The Belgian’s strike sent the game to a penalty shootout.

Arsenal scored all four of their kicks in the shootout while Manchester City missed twice through De Bruyne and Rodri, giving the Gunners the win for their 17th Community Shield.

Manchester City have now lost their last three FA Community Shields against Leicester City, Liverpool and Arsenal, and will be eager to bounce back on Friday when they visit Turf Moor to take on Burnley in their Premier League opener. Arsenal take on Nottingham Forest about 15 hours later.



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