Arsenal 2-1 Inter Milan – 29/07/07 – (Friendly) 31 July, 2007Posted by lasagnechef in Friendlies.
Champions! In the second half of Sunday’s game I was getting really into it and I really wanted us to win the very first Emirates Cup for some reason. So I was really proud that we came from 1-0 down to win the cup. The winner was scored by Robin Van Persie five minutes from time and what a goal it was. If you didn’t see it yesterday, watch it here…and if you did see it yesterday, watch it again.
Gallas captained another strong side in which Hleb started in that same central role as he did against PSG and with 17-year-old Kieran Gibbs out on the left wing. With PSG beating Valencia 3-0 in the earlier game we needed to win or draw 2-2+ to take the cup.
The opening stages of the game were very encouraging and we very nearly opened the scoring after half an hour when Gibbs put through Flamini but it was saved by Cesar. A few minutes later Sagna forced the Inter goalie into action again and just before half time Van Persie had a free kick in a decent position but he couldn’t get it on target.
So at half time it was 0-0, the Emirates Cup win was still in sight. We made no changes at half time; I don’t know if that was Wenger showing he wanted to win this game, or if there was simply none needed, but it was quite a positive move at this stage. 10 minutes into the second half Van Persie was brought down and to me it looked like a penalty. I still have seen a replay since Sunday but to me it looked like it should’ve been at the time.
In the 62nd minute Inter went 1-0 up. It was totally unexpected and undeserved but that’s football. Suazo beat Gallas to a header and it went in off the post past Lehmann. It was the German’s first game of the season and it looked like he was heading for a clean sheet but it wasn’t to be.
It only took 5 minutes for us to equalise though. It could’ve been sooner than that though, their goal made us hungrier…Eboue blasted a shot just wide of the goal a couple of minutes after Inter’s goal. It was Hleb that did score though. Eboue and Sagna linked up well on the right and the new signing played a short ball to Hleb who had his initial shot saved but netted the rebound. One more goal and the Emirates Cup was almost certainly ours. Even though it was a nothing pre-season tournament the crowd seemed up for it and where urging the team to attack.
We had plenty more goes at goal but nothing seemed to pull off. However the way we were playing the belief was there. The winner finally came 5 minutes from time, a cracker from Van Persie (the link to the video is at the start of this post). Ashburton Grove went mad and the cup was surely won. The goal was perfect for the occasion and hopefully Robin can show a bit more of that magic this year.
Then there was the trophy celebrations and that was about it really. It was a great day out and was great to see us picking up a bit of silverware for once. Hopefully more to come…
Just a quick mention of some individuals. Hleb was excellant again, I hope this season he gats many more oppertunities in this central position. Gibbs had a fantastic debut, maybe we haven’t seen the last of him this season? Sagna and Eboue seem to be working really well on that right hand side, it’s looking good for the new campaign. And finally Van Persie is just getting better and better.
It’s off to Amsterdam now. We play Lazio on Thursday. Thanks for reading.