Spirits are excessive on the Emirates and with good motive. Arsenal head into the opening Premier League weekend because the in-form facet in pre-season, boasting 5 wins in 5, 20 targets scored and a wealthy summer season of switch exercise.
Having their Champions League hopes shattered on the demise by bitter rivals Tottenham final season would usually have introduced on a darkish cloud of perturbance and unrest, however Mikel Arteta and the board have finished effectively in pre-season to revive a sense of buoyancy amongst the Emirates supporters.
Marquee signing Gabriel Jesus has hit the bottom operating with seven targets in his 4 video games, serving to the Gunners cripple prime 4 rivals Chelsea 4-0 and Champions League qualifiers Sevilla 6-0 within the Emirates Cup.
Mikel Arteta will need to get off to a greater begin this season after final yr’s opening day defeat
Nevertheless, the upper the spirits are heading into a brand new season, the additional there may be to fall. Each final summer season and on this switch window up to now, Arsenal have spent more cash than some other Premier League membership, which means expectation is at an all-time excessive since Arteta’s arrival in 2019.
For 2 seasons operating, Arsenal have been entrusted with elevating the Premier League curtain on a Friday evening, this yr in opposition to Patrick Vieira’s Crystal Palace.
Sportsmail has assessed why the Gunners’ go to to Selhurst Park may current a possible banana pores and skin for Arteta, as he appears to keep away from opening day defeat for a second consecutive season following the 2-0 loss at Brentford final marketing campaign.
Gabriel Jesus heads into the season having scored seven targets in his 4 pre-season matches
Crystal Palace – are they Arsenal’s bogey crew?
Arsenal’s spirited Champions League cost final season was stopped in its tracks by Crystal Palace, who sparked the Gunners’ woeful run to shut out the season.
Arteta’s facet had been comfortably sitting fourth forward of their journey to Selhurst Park however nosedived after the 3-0 thrashing by Palace.
Jean-Philippe Mateta, Jordan Ayew and Wilfried Zaha capitalised on some questionable defending from Arsenal on the evening, and the north London membership went on to lose 2-1 to Brighton and 1-0 to Southampton of their subsequent two video games.
Jean-Philippe Mateta scored the primary as Crystal Palace smashed Arsenal 3-0 in April at house
The pointless run successfully price the Gunners Champions League soccer, as Spurs leapfrogged them forward of the ultimate match of the season.
Of their final eight Premier League conferences with Palace, Arsenal have gained simply as soon as, drawing 5 occasions and shedding twice.
Regardless of impressing in pre-season, and heading into the brand new marketing campaign as maybe essentially the most in-form facet within the division, Arsenal have struggled for outcomes in opposition to the Eagles in latest occasions.
An added narrative since final summer season has been the arrival of Gunners legend Vieira at Selhurst Park, who has impressed after taking the hotseat.
Bukayo Saka emerged as Arsenal’s star participant final marketing campaign and has been sharp in pre-season
Three factors off the highest half, Vieira marshalled Palace to a twelfth place end final marketing campaign, boasting the second-highest aim tally to any facet exterior the highest eight, behind Aston Villa.
His facet additionally completed the marketing campaign with simply 46 targets conceded, fewer than the likes of Manchester United, West Ham, Leicester – and Arsenal.
Maybe feeling as if they’ve a psychological benefit over Arsenal following April’s victory, Crystal Palace will head into the opening day assured of inflicting an upset.
All or Nothing – can Arsenal deal with the highlight?
Alongside Manchester United following the arrival of Erik ten Hag, Arsenal have been on the centre of media consideration in pre-season, having simply missed out on prime 4 after a disappointing last stretch.
The long-awaited new sequence of Amazon’s All or Nothing, focusing particularly on Arsenal’s marketing campaign final season, was launched earlier this week simply in time for the Premier League curtain raiser.
Due largely to their younger squad – the youngest within the prime flight final season – the Gunners struggled to deal with the stress of lacking out on Champions League qualification when outcomes began to evade them.
The revealing nature of All or Nothing is prone to heap a glut of stress on Arsenal’s squad
When the load was at its heaviest, Arsenal suffered two defeats in every week to bitter rivals Tottenham and burgeoning Newcastle, all however ending any hope of a return to the Champions League.
And now, maybe on the worst doable time, the younger squad as soon as once more have the highlight on them and on this event in essentially the most revealing method – a fly on the wall documentary.
All or Nothing has heaped much more stress on to the Gunners squad, with no stone left unturned from final season.
Friday hoodoo – can Arteta escape opening day defeat?
The Gunners had been handed a shock on the opening day final season, as all eyes had been on Brentford forward of their debut marketing campaign within the Premier League.
Beginning with a line-up together with Folarin Balogun, Pablo Mari and Calum Chambers, there was little doubt Arsenal had a weakened facet earlier than the match, having struggled to get key gamers reminiscent of Bukayo Saka as much as full health following Euro 2020.
The two-0 defeat was an unacceptable scoreline. However the method of the defeat was maybe essentially the most alarming takeaway from the evening, because the defence was bullied by Ivan Toney and the assault supplied little in the way in which of creativity.
Arteta instantly flew to the summit of the Premier League sack race, with loads of followers already calling for his departure.
Brentford dispatched Arsenal 2-0 on the opening day of the Premier League season final yr
Regardless of Arteta’s turnaround final season, efficiently securing a decent – while not splendid – fifth place end within the league, followers had been prone to have rolled their eyes after they noticed Arsenal had been starting the brand new marketing campaign on a Friday evening as soon as once more.
Nevertheless, a key change this yr is that Arsenal have loads of pre-season minutes below their belt and are heading into Friday evening in a purple patch of kind. Though Takehiro Tomiyasu, Emile Smith-Rowe and Kieran Tierney are doubts to characteristic in opposition to Crystal Palace, Arsenal have actively used pre-season to take care of the problems.
Final summer season’s £50million signing Ben White has been deployed at right-back throughout plenty of pre-season, with William Saliba partnering Gabriel Magalhaes on the coronary heart of defence.
While Arteta would doubtless want to have Tomiyasu matching up in opposition to hazard man Zaha on the correct facet of defence, White has had sufficient of a chance in pre-season to arrange for the duty.
Ben White has been enjoying at right-back in pre-season with Takehiro Tomiyasu out injured
Likewise, unconvinced by left-back deputy Nuno Tavares – who was hooked off in April’s 3-0 defeat to Palace – Arteta implored the board to herald Oleksandr Zinchenko to cowl for Tierney, who’s prone to miss the beginning of the season.
The Ukrainian could find yourself enjoying in midfield as soon as Arsenal’s first-choice left-back returns from harm, however signing a flexible participant with Zinchenko’s high quality reveals that the membership are studying from the errors of final yr.
With a much-changed Leicester facet, Bournemouth, Fulham and Aston Villas to face within the subsequent 4 matches after Crystal Palace, Arsenal may head into September close to the highest of the Premier League, if they can dodge the opening day banana pores and skin.