Arsenal win Community Shield beating Liverpool on penalties

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored in normal time and the decisive penalty
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored in normal time and the decisive penalty (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal collected the first silverware of the new Premier League season, winning 5-4 on penalties following a 1-1 draw at Wembley.

The champions were the first to threaten and thougt they had taken an early lead when Virgil van Dijk prodded home Andrew Robertson’s curling free-kick, but the Dutch centre-half had strayed marginally off-side.

Arsenal capitalised on that reprieve with Aubameyang providing a fitting end to a flowing move which began with goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez.

Hector Bellerin’s ball down the line found Bukayo Saka, who in turn freed the Arsenal captain with a clever switch of play.

Kieran Tierney’s overlapping run provided stand-in full-back Necco Williams , deputising for the injured Trent Alexander-Arnold, with the distraction which allowed Aubameyang to cut in on his deadly right foot and the Gunners skipper curled a superb finish beyond Alisson Becker into the far corner.

The Brazilian goalkeeper was forced into action shortly afterwards, with Saka again the provider, this time laying the ball into the path of Eddie Nketiah, but the forward’s shot lacked the necessary power to beat the Liverpool No.1.

Jurgen Klopp’s side eased their way back into the match as the half wore on with Robertson providing a stream of crosses which, on another day, would have resulted in goals for the likes of Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.

Liverpool already had two weeks of pre-season training under their belts, compared to Arsenal’s one, and their superior fitness levels began to tell in the second period.

Roberto Firmino was inches away from matching Aubameyang’s effort, while Emiliano Martinez had to be at his best to keep out Sadio Mane in a one-on-one situation.

Liverpool’s pressure, however, eventually told midway through the second half when a fortuitous bounce provided Takumi Minamino with the chance to slot home his first goal for the club following his January move from RB Salzburg.

Neither side were able to find a winner, however, but it was Arteta’s improving team who kept their cool in the shootout.

Rhian Brewster was the only man among 10 players to miss from 12 yards, clipping the top of the crossbar providing Aubameyang with the chance to clinch a second trophy in the space of a month for Arteta.

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