Arsenal 3-1 Nagoya Grampus: Report

Chris McGrath

Olivier Giroud, Ryo and Theo Walcott all scored as Arsenal won 3-1.

Fabianski; Jenkinson, Sagna, Mertesacker, Gibbs (Miquel); Arteta (Wilshere), Ramsey (Aneke); Walcott (Akpom), Rosicky (Zelalem), Ryo (Gnabry); Giroud (Podolski)

Arsenal faced sterner opposition in the form of the J-League's Nagoya Grampus, but still ran out 3-1 winners. With the J-League in the middle of its campaign, and Nagoya's reputation as a fairly decent side, many expected Arsenal to struggle, but they put those doubts to rest in just under 2 minutes. Tomas Rosicky worked some space and delivered a perfect cross into the middle of the 6 yard box, where Olivier Giroud powered home for his 6th goal of the tour.

With that, Arsenal were on their way, and were able to expose Nagoya's rather high defensive line. Theo Walcott constantly drove at Nagoya's defence, and was put through by Rosicky, but drove his shot straight at the goalkeeper. Walcott and Giroud also contrived to mess up a counter attack, with Walcott passing behind Giroud, before the two combined to win a penalty. Driving at the defence again, Walcott had Giroud to the right and Ryo and Aaron Ramsey to the left of him; he passed right to Giroud, who tried to return the pass to Walcott, but was tackled by Tulio Tanaka in the process, who handled. Arsenal gave the penalty to local boy Ryo Miyaichi, who powered the penalty into the left side of the goal, giving Arsenal a 2-0 lead.

Nagoya had a chance of their own, with Carl Jenkinson's slackness allowing a forward to slip in (It was hard to tell who, given DENSO was on the back of all of the shirts), but, with just Fabianski to beat, he Gervinho'd the chance, completely mishitting the shot.

That was it for the first half, and Arsenal made several changes. One of the changes, Lukas Podolski, had a chance right at the beginning of the second half, receiving a pass from Theo Walcott, and being allowed to shift the ball onto his favoured left foot. However, he was slightly knocked off the ball, and passed wide for Serge Gnabry, who completely snuffed the chance.

Walcott and Jenkinson played a lovely combination down the right, and Walcott skipped clear into the box, but, with 3 Arsenal players waiting, he cut the ball back to a Nagoya defender. He was then put in by Jack Wilshere, but his shot was parried. Arsenal would get the third goal, and it was set up by Gedion Zelalem. From the top of the box, he played a brilliant throughball inside the fullback, and Walcott chipped the keeper with his left foot to make it 3-0. Walcott got the goal, but it was all about Gedion Zelalem's pass.

Nagoya would get a goal back; Lukas Podolski didn't do due diligence down the left hand side, and Bacary Sagna and Per Mertesacker were beaten in the air for the forward to head past Lukasz Fabianski to make it 3-1.

Arsenal would get another chance, and again, it came through Zelalem. This time, he slipped a little outside of the foot pass for Akpom, but the striker fluffed his lines. That part wasn't so good, but, man, Zelalem is good.

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