Gabriel Jesus scored his fourth pre-season goal but later went off injured as Arsenal hammered four past Chelsea.
The Gunners capped their tour of America by laying down a marker against their Premier League rivals in front of a record 63,811 fans at Orlando’s Camping World Stadium just two weeks before the new season.
Jesus continued his fine pre-season form since signing from Manchester City with a delicate chip over Edouard Mendy to open the scoring after 15 minutes.
Martin Odegaard, having seen his free-kick tipped over by Mendy, then found a way past the Senegal goalkeeper with a low finish from Gabriel Martinelli’s pass.
Mason Mount hit a post with Chelsea’s only chance of the first half as Arsenal’s new signing Oleksandr Zinchenko impressed before being subbed at the break.
How the teams lined up:
- Arsenal: Ramsdale (Turner 72), Zinchenko (Tavares 46), Gabriel, Saliba, White (Cedric 72), Xhaka (Lokonga 78), Partey (Elneny 72), Martinelli (Pepe 72), Odegaard (Maitland-Niles 78), Saka (Marquinhos 72), Jesus (Nketiah 57).
- Unused subs: Balogun, Bellerin, Holding, Mari, Marquinhos, Nelson, Walters.
- Chelsea: Mendy, James (Hudson-Odoi 73), Chalobah (Sarr 45), Silva (Koulibaly 73), Emerson (Alonso 46), Gallagher (Kovacic 46), Jorginho (Ampadu 73), Havertz (Batshuayi 64), Mount ( Ziyech 64), Sterling (Azpilicueta 46), Werner (Pulisic 46).
- Unused subs: Bettinelli, Chilwell, Sharman-Lowe
Bukayo Saka tapped in a third during the second half from a rebound following Mendy’s save from Granit Xhaka’s volley before Albert Sambi Lokonga added the gloss with an injury-time header.
Chelsea’s new signing Kalidou Koulibaly impressed during a 17-minute cameo but Thomas Tuchel was furious with his side’s worrying display.
Mikel Arteta, meanwhile, has seen Arsenal win all four of their pre-season matches in style although he will be hoping the £45m Jesus will be fit for their season opener against Crystal Palace live on Sky Sports after the striker signaled to the bench just before the hour mark that he needed to be substituted.
“He got a knock in the first half in his quad I think and it wasn’t very comfortable to continue and, obviously, we didn’t take any risks today,” Arteta explained.
Arteta on Zinchenko’s debut:
“He was desperate to play and I knew that. It was a maximum of 45 minutes but you could see straight away he was comfortable. He understands everything that I want, he understands the process and I thought he had a really good game.”
Arsenal host Sevilla in their final pre-season match at the end of a campaign which has raised hopes among supporters.
“As you could see there are a lot of positives to take from the game,” said Arteta. “The way we played, the intensity we showed, the way we were trying to show who we are as a team. But at the same time, it’s just a test match. Don’t get carried away. There are still a lot of things that we have to get better at and do better.
Arsenal’s pre-season friendlies:
- 1. FC Nurnberg 3-5 Arsenal
- Arsenal 2-0 Everton
- Orlando City 1-3 Arsenal
- Arsenal 4-0 Chelsea
- Sevilla – Saturday July 30, Emirates Stadium, London; kick-off 12.30pm BST
“But I think it’s good to get some momentum, finish the tour in the right way, give some enjoyment to our fans and everybody that’s been contributing to make this tour happen. Now it’s time to go back to London, to focus and keep making improvements and steps forward.
“We had a great time. Thank you so much for everyone who participated in organizing this tour.
“We’ve tried to make it as enjoyable and as productive as possible. In the sporting side, the facilities were really good in both games that we played and they were really good, competitive matches, great attendance so we’re looking forward to getting back one day.”
Tuchel: We were simply not good enough
Thomas Tuchel on Chelsea’s 4-0 defeat to Arsenal:
“I think we deserved to lose – which is fair enough – because we were simply not good enough,” he said.
“We were absolutely not competitive. The worrying part is the level of commitment, physically and mentally, for this match was not the same, it was far higher for Arsenal than us.
Chelsea’s pre-season friendlies:
- Chelsea 2-1 Club America
- Charlotte FC 1-1 Chelsea (Chelsea lost 5-3 on penalties)
- Arsenal 4-0 Chelsea
- Udinese – Friday July 29, Dacia Arena, Udine; kick-off 8pm BST
“We can argue they played with I think their strongest line-up; they’ve now had several weeks together and for more than one year. They’ve strengthened their line-up, played the same structure, and this is the line- up they’ll try to start Premier League games.
“It was not our strongest line-up and this is part of an explanation, but only a little part. The other part is worrying.”
Arsenal host Sevilla at the Emirates Stadium in their last pre-season test on Saturday July 30; kick-off 12.30pm BST
Chelsea head to Italy for their final friendly to face Udinese on Friday July 29 at the Dacia Arena; kick-off 8pm BST.
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