Pre-season friendlies are always important leading to a team’s preparations for the upcoming season and it is the pre-season performance of a player which determines whether he makes the playing XI for the coming season or not. Hence the pre-season friendlies become all the more important for all teams and players around the world. It also involves interaction with fans from all over the world. Arsenal FC have always taken the pre-season seriously and have played some wonderful and quality football during this period as well. Moreover fans from Asia, Oceania and America get to see their stars in their own countries which is tremendous considering that they support a club which is situated in a country far away from theirs. Hence the pre-season friendlies helps the fans to connect themselves with their favorite players as well.
This pre-season AFC have two important trophies to contest for namely the Barclays Asia trophy which was held in Singapore last week and the Emirates cup which is scheduled to start on July 25th in our very own Emirates stadium. And above all we have the all important Community Shield 2015 fixture against arch rivals and champions Chelsea on August 1st before the season which finally starts on August 8th . We play our first match of the coming season on August 9th against West Ham at home.
In the Barclays Asia trophy Arsenal beat Singapore Select XI 4-0 in the semi-final and went on to beat Everton 3-1 in the final. Arsenal youngster Chuba Akpom scored a hattrick against the Singapore team and made a cause for his selection in the coming season. English midfielder Jack Wilshere scored the other goal of that match via a penalty. In the game against Everton Arsenal’s Spanish magician Santi Cazorla impressed with 1 goal and 2 assists. English forward Theo Walcott and German midfielder Mesut Ozil scored 1 goal each in that game with Ross Barkley scoring a late consolation for Everton. Arsenal’s latest signing Petr Cech made his unofficial Arsenal debut in the final against Everton. The entire Arsenal team also interacted with the fans in Singapore and also unveiled the club’s official away kit for the 2015-16 season. Hence Arsenal’s Singapore tour was a success. Hopefully the Barclays Asia trophy is one of many more trophies to come this season.
Next up we have the Emirates cup coming up. This year’s competition involves three teams apart from Arsenal namely French club Olympique Lyon, German club Wolfsburg and Spanish club Villarreal. We last won the Emirates cup back in 2010 and are currently on a 5-year drought. Hopefully that drought ends this time as we have one of our strongest squads in recent times. We play Olympique Lyon on the 25th of July and Wolfsburg on 26th of July. Both the matches will be a virtual treat for the Emirates crowd who will see their favorite players in action after almost two months. Hence this year’s Emirates cup will be one to watch out for.
Next up we have the 2015 Community Shield in which Petr Cech will be up against his ex-employers Chelsea for the first time. This is an all important fixture considering that Arsenal has never beaten a Mourinho-lead Chelsea and this will be our best chance to beat them. If we beat them it will be a big confidence boost for us ahead of the all important 2015-16 season. Lets sit back and hope for the best thing to happen. And above all lets also hope that manager Arsene Wenger brings in a new striker and defensive midfielder before the season starts. This is our best chance to win the league after 12 long years . We must somehow make it count.