Arsenal Beat Lazio 2 – 0 in Their Final Pre-Season Game
Reiss Nelson and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang found the net as we ended our pre-season programme with a win in Sweden.
It was Nelson, still just 18, who broke the deadlock with a close-range finish after Alex Iwobi’s shot had bounced off the far post.
Calum Chambers deserves an honourable mention too. It was his assertive run out of defence and precise pass to Nelson that opened up Lazio and allowed the eventual goalscorer to find Iwobi in space on the left.
Aubameyang came on at half-time and doubled our lead after Mohamed Elneny had bulldozed his way into the box under severe pressure and found Alex Lacazette.
The striker was aware enough to lay the ball off for Aubameyang and his shot found the bottom corner via a deflection.
Lacazette went close to a goal himself with a well-executed volley from Stephan Lichtsteiner’s ball over the top. Incidentally, the Swiss right back looked solid on his first appearance for the club – as did Lucas Torreira.
In fairness, Lazio should have been level before they fell further behind. Felipe Caicedo volleyed off target, Luis Alberto chipped Leno but was denied by the crossbar, and Marco Parolo headed just wide.
Instead, Aubameyang’s fourth goal of the summer took the game beyond them and ensured we finished a productive pre-season on a high note.
Now for Manchester City.
WHO DIDN’T TRAVEL?
We were without four players in Stockholm.
Sead Kolasinac has been ruled out for eight to 10 weeks, Aaron Ramsey suffered a minor calf problem in Dublin on Wednesday, and Nacho Monreal is working his way back to fitness.
Laurent Koscielny is a long-term absentee.
That’s it for pre-season. Now the serious stuff begins, and it begins with a seriously difficult game against Manchester City.
The Premier League champions visit Emirates Stadium next season for our first fixture of the 2018/19 campaign.