Arsenal brings home 13th Community Shield with 3-0 defeat of Man City

1 Comment

Olivier Giroud’s deflected shot in the 61st minute lifted Arsenal into comfortable territory in their pursuit of the Community Shield with a 3-0 lead, and the Gunners later coasted into their 13th shield by the same score.

Santi Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey scored first-half goals and Wojciech Szczesny wasn’t troubled much as Arsenal ravaged a weakened Manchester City back line.

The first domestic hardware of the season is moving to London’s Arsenal for the first time since 2004. It was the Gunners’ first appearance in the match since 2005.

[ MORE: Vermaelen makes move to Barcelona official ]

Here’s what we were saying at halftime after Cazorla deftly beat the City defense and the combination of Yaya Sanogo and Ramsey made it 2-0.

And here’s Giroud’s rip, which appears to be tipped enough off the foot to confuse City keeper Willy Caballero.

The 55th minute found a great shot from Aleksandar Kolarov matched by the diving save of Szczesny.

But just as City was finding its feet, the London club lit up Wembley with Giroud’s goal.

Costa Rican hero Joel Campbell made a late and rare appearance for Arsenal in the 86th minute.

Arsenal start their Premier League season Saturday against Crystal Palace, and Manchester City visits Newcastle on Sunday.

source:  Recent Community Shield winners
2014 – Arsenal
2013 – Manchester United
2012 – Manchester City
2011 – Manchester United
2010 – Manchester United
2009 – Chelsea
2008 – Manchester United
2007 – Manchester United
2006 – Liverpool
2005 – Chelsea
2004 – Arsenal

Lineups

Manchester City: Caballero, Clichy, Boyata, Nastasic, Kolarov (Richards, 75′), Navas (Sinclair, 85′), Fernando, Toure (Zuculini, 60′), Nasri, Jovetic, Dzeko (Milner, 60′)

Arsenal: Szczesny, Debuchy, Koscielny (Monreal, 46′), Chambers, Gibbs, Arteta, Wilshere (Flamini, 68′), Ramsey (Campbell, 86′), Alexis (Oxlade-Chamberlain, 46′), Cazorla (Rosicky, 70′), Sanogo (Giroud, 46′)

Goals: Cazorla (22), Ramsey (42), Giroud (60)

Raiola: Zlatan to “100 percent” stay in Europe for two seasons

AP Photo/Martin Meissner
Leave a comment

Zlatan Ibrahimovic may be 35 and coming off major knee surgery, but that isn’t stopping suitors from lining up across Europe.

Ibrahimovic’s agent, Mino Raiola, says that MLS is not an option for the Swede over the next two seasons. From Sky Sports:

“Many clubs have asked for Zlatan. He can play two more years and will stay in Europe, 100 per cent.”

It would make sense for Ibrahimovic to stay around Manchester United, where he is admired by Jose Mourinho and coming off a season that showed he’s still capable of contributing at a high level.

But he remains beloved in Italy, and would be effective for most clubs in the Top 5 leagues should he return at even 75 percent of the Zlatan we’ve seen regularly.

Report: Manchester United, Inter Milan keen on Perisic deal

Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Manchester United wants Ivan Perisic, and both the player and his current club are all about it.

Perisic, 28, is ready to leave Inter Milan, and the Serie A mainstays are happy to accept $46 million for his services according to Sky Sports.

[ MORE: No China for Costa ]

Primarily a left winger, Perisic moved to Inter from Wolfsburg at the start of the 2015-16 season. He scored 10 goals and added nine assists in Serie A play this season, and has kept up his production pace since moving from the Bundesliga to Italy.

United needs stars and depth for its Champions League campaign, and Perisic would buttress an attack with Marcus Rashford, Henrikh Mkhitaryan amongst others. He was a difference maker for Croatia at EURO 2016, and can do the same at Old Trafford.

Celtic secures trophy treble, ends Scottish season unbeaten

Jeff Holmes/PA via AP
Leave a comment

GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) Celtic completed a trophy treble in Scottish soccer and finished the domestic season undefeated after beating Aberdeen 2-1 in the Scottish Cup final thanks to an injury-time goal on Saturday.

Midfielder Tom Rogic scored from an acute angle in the second minute of stoppage time at Hampden Park to ensure Celtic added the cup to the Scottish Premiership and the Scottish League Cup.

[ MORE: No China for Costa ]

Brendan Rodgers became the third manager, after Jock Stein (1967, 1969) and Martin O’Neill (2001), to lead Celtic to a treble of domestic titles.

Celtic hasn’t lost any of its 47 games across in the league and both cups, and is the first team to go through the whole of a Scottish domestic season unbeaten.

No China for Costa: It’ll be Chelsea or Atletico Madrid

Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Blues striker Diego Costa offered some insight into his future following Chelsea’s FA Cup Final loss to Arsenal on Saturday.

The combustible striker was subject to a head-turning bid from the Chinese Super League this winter, but is only looking at two European locations for his future.

Those are his current club, Chelsea, as well as former home at Atletico Madrid.

[ JPW: Poignant FA Cup Final reflects English mood ]

The 28-year-old Costa has kept his scoring pace level since arriving in the Premier League. He scored 64 goals in 134 matches for Atleti, and has notched 58 goals for Chelsea in 120 appearances.

Costa reportedly said, “No, no, no” when asked about China, as well as the following: