Arsenal 1-0 Chelsea: Oxlade-Chamberlain strike wins Gunners FA Community Shield

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More than 85,000 fans packed Wembley Stadium for the FA Community Shield, where Arsenal left with a 1-0 victory over Chelsea.

The result means Arsene Wenger is no longer winless against Jose Mourinho, as it took him 14 tries to finally beat his rival manager. Now the Gunners must look forward to the start of the Premier League, which kicks off next weekend.

[ MORE: All of PST’s PL season previews ]

It was a strange sight to see Petr Cech lining up in goal for Arsenal against Chelsea, the team he made nearly 500 appearances for over the past 11 seasons.

Both sides were missing some stars, as Diego Costa was unavailable for Chelsea while nursing a hamstring injury. Arsenal was without Alexis Sanchez, who is still being given some rest after leading Chile to a win in the Copa America tournament.

The match had a testy start to it, as a few strong challenges were made between the two London clubs. It didn’t take long for the Arsenal fans to begin taunting Chelsea’s supposed “boring” style of play, the same style of play that won the Blues the Premier League title last season.

It was Arsenal that had the better run of play to start the match, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain fired the Gunners ahead in the 24th minute. Oxlade-Chamberlain took a ball from Theo Walcott on the right side of the box, cut past Cesar Azpilicueta onto his left foot and rifled a shot into the top corner.

[ VIDEO: Watch Alex-Oxlade Chamberlain open the scoring for Arsenal with a brilliant finish ]

After the goal, Chelsea picked up their play a bit and should have drawn level ten minutes later. Loic Remy threw in a cross from the left wing to Ramires, who was wide open on the top of the six. But the Brazilian put his header just over the bar as the scoreline remained in Arsenal’s favor.

In the second half, Radamel Falcao came in for Remy, as the Colombian striker is looking to find his form again after a disappointing loan at Manchester United last season.

While Falcao is a new face at Chelsea, it was the Blues’ main man Eden Hazard who nearly found an equalizer in the 61st minute. Last season’s PFA Player of the Year took a good ball from Cesc Fabregas in on goal, but Laurent Koscielny closed him down quickly as Hazard fired high.

[ RELATED: Roy Keane thinks Arsenal players are too focused on “selfies and six-packs” ]

Petr Cech made his biggest save of the match just minutes later, keeping his old club off the board. With a free kick from just outside the box Oscar curled one towards the top corner, but Cech dove to his right and made a massive stop as he narrowly avoided clattering into the post.

Santi Cazorla had a golden opportunity to close out the match for Arsenal five minutes from full-time, but couldn’t get his chip over Thibaut Courtois, who stayed big to deny the Spanish midfielder.

With the clock winding down, Chelsea never really put the pressure on Arsenal, as the Gunners claim the first silverware of the season.

LINEUPS

Arsenal: Cech, Monreal, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Bellerin, Coquelin, Ozil (Gibbs, 82′), Cazorla, Ramsey, Oxlade-Chamberlain (Arteta, 77′), Walcott (Giroud, 66′)

Goal: Oxlade-Chamberlain (24′)

Chelsea: Courtois, Azpilicueta (Zouma, 69′), Terry (Moses, 82′), Cahill, Ivanovic, Matic, Fabregas, Hazard, Willian, Ramires (Oscar, 54′), Remy (Falcao, 46′)

Premier League social media wrap: Brighton, teqball, remembering Tiote

Premier League social media
Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images
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Premier League sides are fully back in the flow of training with scheduled matches coming within a fortnight.

[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

So it’s no surprise that banter’s back, too.

That’s where we’ll start Friday, with Irish center back Shane Duffy making sure he’s keeping things light as Brighton and Hove Albion prepares to defend its Premier League place.

Duffy turned a sprinkler on his teammates at training, showing that, yes, your high school career has some things in common with Premier League footballers.

How about some skills as Manchester United gets ready for its return to the PL pitch?

Bruno Fernandes and Andreas Pereira tangled with Fred and Diogo Dalot in a match of Teqball.

You’ll have to watch to see who won.

There’s also a sad anniversary on this day.

It’s been three years since former Newcastle United wrecking ball Cheick Tiote passed away at age 30 after collapsing during a training session with Chinese side Beijing Enterprises, causing shock and grief around the Premier League.

His former teammates were remembering him on Friday, the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations winner was definitely beloved and will always be remembered for his incredible goal to cap off Newcastle’s 4-4 comeback draw with Arsenal.

We’ll start with Norwich City backstop Tim Krul, who spent time with Tiote at Newcastle.

Former Magpies wizard Yohan Cabaye pinned an old memorial to his Twitter wall.

 

Preview: Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin

Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha preview, how to watch
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Four Bundesliga teams are unbeaten in their last five matches and Hertha Berlin is the unlikeliest of the bunch.

They’ll tangle with Borussia Dortmund at the Westfalenstadion on Saturday in the latest challenge of the Bruno Labaddia era in Berlin.

[ BUNDESLIGA: Week 30 preview and predictions ]

Labbadia is Hertha’s third manager of the season and Hertha has played a scrappy brand of football that has punched and counter-punched under his tutelage. That doesn’t mean they’ve failed to find finish, as Liverpool loanee Marko Grujic and Brazilian youngster Matheus Cunha have been potent.

Borussia Dortmund is a bigger ask, though Hertha made RB Leipzig make mistakes in a 2-2 tie.

[ LIVE: Bundesliga scores, stats ]

Will it be able to get a result at the Westfalenstadion? Perhaps this is a bridge too far, because Dortmund’s shown an explosive offense and its defense has been strong far more often than not this season.

That said, Erling Haaland is just returning to fitness and has just one goal since the league’s restart from the coronavirus pause. Mats Hummels will miss with a yellow card suspension and Marco Reus still isn’t back.

Maybe American teen Giovanni Reyna will get prolonged run along with Jadon Sancho. We’ll see!

Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin, how to watch

  • TV Channels: FS2
  • Stream LiveVia Fox Soccer
  • Americans Abroad: Giovanni Reyna (Dortmund)
  • When: Saturday, June 6 – 12:30 p.m. ET: Dortmund v. Hertha

Sheffield United season restart preview

Sheffield United season restart preview
Photo by Bradley Collyer/PA Images via Getty Images)
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With the 2019-20 Premier League season soon to restart, let’s focus on all 20 clubs and see where they stand ahead of the final nine matches of the season.

Sheffield United is next.

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

Let’s take a closer look at all things Blades when it comes to the season restart.


Outlook: Sheffield United has welcomed itself to the Premier League and put its feet up on the big boys’ tables while asking what’s for dinner. Blades sit seventh and will hope to continue a fairytale which has them on the precipice of the Europa League. Their fixture list in monstrous, especially at Bramall Lane, but Wilder’s proven capable of outwitting even the smartest of bosses for long periods of time. A name to remember is Simon Moore. The backup keeper and starter from Blades’ League One days could become vital should Manchester United defy expectation and pull Dean Henderson home from his loan upon its June 30 expiry.

[ MORE: Ranking every Southampton player in 2019-20 ]


Tactical analysis: Chris Wilder has flummoxed many a Premier League manager with his creative use of defenders in attack. United typically uses Jack O’Connell, John Egan and Chris Basham as a back-3 with Enda Stevens and George Baldock as the two wingbacks. Those players have accounted for six of United’s 18 PL assists this season. For more on the tactics, Wilder laid things out in entertaining fashion for Arlo White late last month.


Possible XI (3-5-2) 

—– Henderson* —–

— Basham — O’Connell — Egan —

— Baldock — Fleck —  Berge —– Norwood — Stevens—

—– McBurnie —– Mousset —–

The challenge here is fitting January signing Berge into the mix, as fellow central midfielders John Fleck, Oliver Norwood, and John Lundstram have been instrumental in this amazing season. Lundstram seems the most likely to cede his spot if someone will, which really says something about Berge’s immense talent. David McGoldrick and Billy Sharp have provided a lot up top, so McBurnie and Mousset will see plenty of time on the bench. And the biggest question of all is Henderson, who’s on loan from top seven rival Manchester United.

[ MORE: The 2 Robbies assess Sheffield United’s chances ]


[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

Remaining schedule
Home: Spurs, Wolves, Chelsea, Everton
Away: Newcastle, Manchester United, Burnley, Leicester City, Southampton

Predicted finish: The Blades will get the chance to defend their home turf from not one, not two, not three, but four would-be European rivals (It’s a little generous to include Everton, but the talent is there). Throw in Leicester and Manchesteer United away, and there is a huge bridge to cross for Wilder’s men to keep their incredible season on the path toward unprecedented heights. It’s not just about keeping Spurs and Arsenal in the rear view mirror, as Blades meet the next four teams above their seventh-place footing.

Petersen’s header leads Freiburg past 10-man Gladbach

Freiburg v. Borussia Monchengladbach recap
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Nils Petersen’s second half goal led Freiburg to a huge 1-0 win over 10-man Borussia Monchengladbach at the Schwarzwald-Stadion on Friday.

Freiburg keeps its Europa League hopes alive by moving onto 41 points, one behind sixth and seventh.

Gladbach fails in a bid to go third and remains fourth with 56 points, ahead of Bayer Leverkusen on goal differential.

A second yellow card to Plea was a double curse to Gladbach, who went down a man and now will miss a star forward against Bayern Munich.

[ LIVE: Bundesliga scores, stats ]

Bayer’s Ramy Bensebaini utilized a slick backheel turn to nutmeg an opponent and send in a cross that was put out for a corner kick.

Freiburg keeper Alexander Schwolow made a tight-angle save on Alassane Plea just after the quarter-hour mark.

Gladbach saw a chance chalked off after two dangerous bids resulted in an offside deflection into the goal.

Florian Neuhaus came close to scoring again when Lars Stindl headed the penultimate move of a fine team play into the six, but he popped it over the frame.

[ BUNDESLIGA: Week 30 preview and predictions ]

Gladbach’s second half again settled into the Freiburg final third, but it was a home sub that paid dividends at the other end.

Petersen improved his club record for goals when he nodded Vincenzo Grifo’s free kick home in the 59th.

Stindl wasn’t too far from equalizing with a 17-yard shot at the hour mark, but Plea’s second yellow card damaged Gladbach’s hopes of a comeback.