Post-Match Report

SC Neusiedl 1919 0-4 Arsenal - Report

SC Neusiedl 1919 -

Sportzentrum Neusiedl
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  SC Neusiedl 1919
SC Neusiedl 1919
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By Richard Clarke in Neusiedl

Marouane Chamakh opened his Arsenal account as Arsène Wenger's side completed their Austrian training camp with a straightforward 4-0 victory at SC Neusiedi on Tuesday night.

Theo Walcott and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas gave the visitors a 2-0 cushion in the first period. The Moroccan's moment came five minutes after he had come on as a half-time substitute. He burst through only to be pushed over by Markus Dombi. Chamakh picked himself up to slot home adroitly from the spot.

Shortly afterwards, another substitute, Carlos Vela, produced the coolest of chips to make it 4-0.

Neusiedl may play in the third tier of Austrian football but they had their moments. None greater than the one presented to them seconds later Harvard Nordtveit was adjudged to have handled.

However Juray Skripec could not beat Vito Mannone from 12 yards.

To be frank this was never a contest once Arsenal shook off some early lethargy. That two-goal first-half burst allowed them to move from second gear straight into cruise control.

But with Milan, Celtic and Legia Warsaw on the horizon, the tests will get tougher from now on.

The party had started at Neusiedl's compact Sportszentrum ground in the early afternoon. A couple of schoolboy games took centre stage as the crowd arrived. By the time Arsenal kicked off at 7pm local time the main stand was rammed and the grass bank behind Manuel Almunia's goal was an old-style sea of heads.

Wenger's starting XI was drawn from the squad that had beaten Barnet and Sturm Graz in the opening two games. However the Frenchman did select a trio of his countrymen - Abou Diaby, Gael Clichy and Bacary Sagna - on the bench for the first time. They were joined two newly-introduced Africans, Emmanuel Eboue and Alex Song. All five had been on duty at the World Cup, hence they had started pre-season training and the friendly matches after the main group.

The opening quarter of an hour was pedestrian. Jack Wilshere had a shout for a penalty, Andrey Arshavin curled a shot into the arms of keeper Adolf Kaiser and Emmanuel-Thomas showed fine feet in the area but could not follow it up with a shot to match.

Neusiedl's opening chance would be much more clear-cut. In the 16th minute, Michael Koller swung over a corner from the right and skipper Dombi stooped at the near post to thunder in a header. Nasri booted the ball off the line.

It took Arsenal a further 10 minutes to respond. Arshavin's angled shot bounced off Kaiser's shoulder and eventually fell to Walcott at the far post. He cut inside his marker but saw his shot blocked.

However, couple of minutes later Walcott would open the scoring - and from virtually the same spot. Arsenal worked the ball up the left once more. Emmanuel-Thomas found Nasri, who fed the England winger. He arrowed his effort home.

On the half hour Walcott beat the keeper once again but his lob drifted wide.

By now Arsenal had found their groove. Second later, Gibbs cut the ball back for Emmanuel-Thomas to turn swiftly before cracking home a second.

Five minutes after the restart it was 3-0 when Chamakh made his mark.

By now Arsenal were in the zone. In the 65th minute, Nasri's clever touch sent substitute Vela through and the Mexican lifted the ball over the stranded keeper.

However seconds later Neusiedl had the chance to reduce the arrears when Dominik Silberbauer's header was handled by Nordtveit. Skripec stepped up to try and make a little piece of personal history.

However Mannone dived to his left to make a fine stop.

The game petered out after that. Neusiedl were not going to get a better chance and Arsenal had used up their creativity for the night.

After the game, Wenger's men left for England with their season's preparation well on track.

Attendance: 4000

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