Havertz scores, Rice debuts as Arsenal thrash MLS All-Stars

Kai Havertz scored his first Arsenal goal as Mikel Arteta’s side thrashed the MLS All Stars 5-0 in Washington.

Havertz, one day after being widely ridiculed on social media for a poor performance in the MLS All-Stars Skills Challenge, rounded off the scoring late on with the last of the five goals.

Gabriel Jesus and Leandro Trossard got the ball rolling for Arsenal with two long-range strikes in a first half that saw five yellow cards for the MLS All-Stars.

Declan Rice made his Arsenal debut in the second half
Declan Rice made his Arsenal debut in the second half

More ill-discipline came 13 seconds into the second half as Arsenal were awarded a penalty after Jesus forced a handball. Jorginho was on hand to coolly slot home the spot-kick.

Arteta brought on Declan Rice and Jurrien Timber for their Arsenal debuts on 65 minutes, but there was also second-half injury concern as Trossard was withdrawn with a knock.

His replacement, Gabriel Martinelli, netted a fourth after being played through by fellow substitute Martin Odegaard. Then Havertz put in a fifth via a fine finish at the back post from Marquinhos’ cross.

Arsenal’s remaining pre-season games

  • July 22: Man Utd vs Arsenal, kick-off 10pm (MetLife Stadium, USA)
  • July 26: Barcelona vs Arsenal, kick-off 10pm (Sofi Stadium, USA)
  • August 2: Arsenal vs Monaco – kick-off 6pm (Emirates Stadium)
  • August 6: Arsenal vs Man City – kick-off 4pm (Wembley) FA Community Shield

Arsenal’s next pre-season game takes place on Saturday, with Arteta’s side playing Erik ten Hag’s Manchester United in New Jersey.

Arteta: Signings are settling in

Gabriel Martinelli also found the net in the 5-0 win
Gabriel Martinelli also found the net in the 5-0 win

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta:

“They are [settling in] and we have to find that fluidity within the game, and those relationships. That’s something that is difficult to predict as a coach what’s going to work, but sometimes whether it’s on the pitch or sitting at the table, they find that chemistry between them.

“Especially, in the first half, the way we started, we were a bit suffocated with the weather, and we started to give too many simple balls away, and we could not really control the game.

What to watch on Sky Sports this week

The 151st Open – July 20 to 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Golf
Fourth Men’s Ashes Test – July 19 to 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Cricket
Premier League Summer Series – from July 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Premier League
Hungarian Grand Prix – July 21 to 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports F1
F1 Juniors: Hungarian GP – July 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Mix
World Matchplay Darts – July 17 to 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Action
Women’s World Matchplay Darts – July 22 to 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Action
IBF Lightweight Title Eliminator – July 23 – LIVE on Sky Sports Action

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“But it was true that we were exceptional in both boxes today; every time we were in the final third in good positions, we put the ball in the back of the net, and we have to defend moments in those transitions when we give the ball away. I think we defended really well as well.

“Havertz gives us something very different with his quality and size. When you have to beat the press for example and use him as a target man.

“So, we will see – for now, he’s playing in the attacking-midfield position, but I’m sure throughout the season and throughout games as well, we’re going to have the options to play him in different positions.”

Arsenal start PL season against Nottingham Forest

Arsenal Fixtures 2023/24

Arsenal will start their 2023/24 Premier League season at home to Nottingham Forest on Saturday August 12.

The Gunners then face two London derbies against Crystal Palace – live on Sky Sports on August 21 – and Fulham before hosting Manchester United in their first ‘Big Six’ match of the season in early September.

The first north London derby of the season takes place at the Emirates Stadium on September 23, with the return fixture on April 27 – the fourth last game of the campaign.

Mikel Arteta’s side’s first game with last season’s title rivals and treble winners Manchester City comes within the first eight games of the campaign on October 7 at home, with the reverse fixture at the Etihad on March 30.

Watch the Premier League summer series on Sky

The Premier League Summer Series will be broadcast live on Sky Sports.

The first-ever Premier League Summer Series in the USA featuring Chelsea, Newcastle, Brighton, Fulham, Brentford and Aston Villa will be broadcast live on Sky Sports.

Five east coast states will host the nine-game friendly tournament from July 23 to 30 in preparation for the new Premier League season.

Each team will play three matches and will not face the same opposition more than once.

Matches will take place at five venues down the east coast: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia; Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta; Exploria Stadium, Orlando; Red Bull Arena, New Jersey; FedExField, Landover, Maryland.

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