|Ferran Torres and Callum Chambers rose to contest a ball at the Etihad sunshine on Saturday. City won 5-0. (Photo credit: Premierleague.com)|
Everything pointed to the eventual score line long before the whistle of Mrtin Atkinson, Arsenal may have beaten a weakened Westbrom side in the EFL cup on Wednesday but there was nothing assuring from the club.
Everything is wrong at Arsenal and you wonder if Mikel Arteta would be in charge if ambitious owners were to be in charge; Arsenal fans learned of interests from Qatari billionaires and they can’t but wish it came through after seeing KSE knock back the advances of Daniel Ek.
Manchester City hosted Arsenal on Saturday for the lunchtime kickoff, Pep Guardiola maintained same squad for the first time since 2017 and he was quick to say it was because he had nothing to prepare for in midweek.
Mikel Arteta rang four weird changes, bringing in Sead Kolasinac who was rumored to be on his way to Fenerbahçe in place of Pablo Mari and Callum Chambers was introduced as a third center back while Cedric Soares was thrown on the right with Piere Emerick Aubemeyang deployed upfront.
Arsenal started on the front foot, pegging City back in the opening minutes but that was all about Arsenal for the whole of the game; one long pass to Gabriel Jesus and Arsenal’s Bernd Leno was soon picking the ball from his net after a weak Gundogan header beat him at his near post.
That opened the floodgates as one became two, Ferran Torres diverted home from a quickly taken corner on the 12th minute. Arsenal quickly picked back to back cautions as Cedric and Kolasinac went into the book, then it went from bad to worse.
Granit Xhaka plunged into Joao Cancelo and referee Atkinson showed him the red card, replays showed it was a harsh decision bit that was that, the half didn’t end without another goal as Jack Grealish fed Gabriel Jesus in the box after an horrendous defending from Arsenal to make it 3 before halftime.
You’d fear the worst for Arsenal at this stage, Arteta sent on Elneny to replace Bukayo Saka at halftime and Guardiola also replaced Kyle Walker with Zinchenko.
Rodri side-footed in from outside the box not long after the restart having been set up by Ferran Torres, it was a sleek move with lots of passes to make it four with Arsenal averaging just 9% ball possession at this stage.
Guardiola introduced Raheem Sterling and he was a menace in the Arsenal box, twisting and turning the Arsenal defenders, the latter didn’t have any choice than to boot the ball anywhere they face, a gory sight to behold.
The game didn’t end without a brace for Torres who headed home from a fine Riyad Mahrez cross, making it five goals without the visitors mustering any effort on target.
It was the anniversary of the trolley dash that got Arteta to Arsenal, the 8-2 demolition in the hands of Manchester United ten years ago, same city, different team. Prompting questions that would Arsenal head into the transfer market for more reinforcements?