2023 US Tour Diary | Everything we've been up to

Mo Elneny with a camera

We are visiting three different cities and playing friendly matches against the MLS All-Stars, Manchester United and Barcelona during a packed pre-season US tour.

Here's a summary of what the team has been up to since arriving in America.

Saturday, July 23

Daily round-up

  • Matchday against Manchester United in New York
  • Mikel Arteta conducts his post-match press conference
  • The team spend their final night in New York before heading across the country to the west coast

Saturday was matchday, with our three summer signings all starting the game against Manchester United at the MetLife Stadium, which posted a new record attendance for the sport.

After the 2-0 defeat, most of the team took part in a training session on the pitch as Mikel Arteta held his post-match press conference, before heading back for a final night in New York.

Sunday was another transition day as the tour party flew west to Los Angeles from New York. The party then arrived in LA on Sunday evening after a five-hour flight, and training resumes in the city on Monday morning.

    Friday, July 21

    Daily round-up

    • A morning training session to prepare for United clash
    • The team flew to New York for the second leg of the tour
    • Mikel Arteta and Alex Zincheko held a pre-match press conference
    • Hundreds of supporters gathered in New York City for a pre-match party with Ray Parlour and Lauren

    Friday was moving day, as the first leg of our US Tour in Washington came to an end. After a day of recovery and regeneration on Thursday, it was back to work in the heat on Friday morning at the George Mason University training ground.

    With matchday against Manchester United in a sold out MetLife Stadium just over 24 hours away, preparation stepped up several gears in training, and there was also an emphasis on set piece work.

    Then it was straight to the airport to fly to New York. Upon arrival Mikel Arteta and Alex Zinchenko headed to the MetLife for the pre-match press conference, while the rest of the squad took part in various media duties at the team hotel. Look out for a couple of special guests on Frimmy's next tour diary!

    Meanwhile, in New York City, more than 1,500 supporters gathered at the Torch and Crown in Union Square for a pre-match party, with Invincibles Ray Parlour and Lauren the guests of honour.

    Wednesday, July 19

    Daily round-up

    • A training session in the morning to continue to build fitness 
    • A pre-match supporter event was held outside the stadium 
    • We beat the MLS All-Stars 5-0 thanks to goals from Gabriel Jesus, Leandro Trossard, Jorginho, Gabriel Martinelli and Kai Havertz
    • Mikel Arteta undertook his post-match press conference

    The day kicked off with a short training session as Mikel Arteta continued to boost the fitness levels of our players, especially those without too many match minutes in their legs so far.

    It was also an opportunity to limber up for the evening's match against the MLS All-Stars, whom we had defeated in the All-Star Skills Challenge the night before.

    With the pre-match atmosphere building, a fan event was held near Audi Field as members of the DC Gooners mixed with fellow US-based supporters and others who had made the long trip over. They enjoyed the opportunity to meet new friends, chat football and have a drink, as well as receive some Arsenal goodies.

    The action on the field saw us claim an emphatic 5-0 win against Wayne Rooney's team. Goals from Gabriel Jesus and Leandro Trossard saw us go into the break ahead, and a Jorginho penalty soon after the restart put us in firm control.

    Mikel Arteta then handed debuts to Declan Rice and Jurrien Timber before further goals came from Gabriel Martinelli and Kai Havertz to complete a comfortable victory.

    Post-match, the boss held a press conference where he discussed various topics including Trossard's fitness after he picked up a knock, the new signings and the performance of the three American players at his disposal.

    Tuesday, July 18

    Daily round up:

    • Training steps up
    • Players take part in various club partner and local community events
    • Pre-match press conference is held
    • We win the MLS All-Star Skills Challenge by a score of 6-5

    A filled Tuesday schedule began with training back at George Mason University.

    Declan Rice had his first session with the group as the players went through a number of attack v defence drills and playing against the press. For the second half of the session the team worked on free-kick and corner routines, then finished with some small-sided, high intensity games of two minutes each.

    After training the players split into groups for media work and other events with club partners. Bukayo Saka, Rice, Leandro Trossard and the three Gabis took part in a photoshoot with adidas for the new away kit.

    Meanwhile Mikel Arteta, Martin Odegaard and Eddie Nketiah travelled to Washington Hotel for the pre-match press conference.

    In the evening ten players went to a sold-out Audi Field for the MLS All-Star Skills Challenge, against their MLS counterparts.

    After taking three of the first four challenges, we sealed victory by winning the crossbar challenge - our former MLS defender Auston Trusty delivered the decisive shot.

    Monday, July 17

    Daily round-up

    ▪ First training session completed
    ▪ Washington stages MLS All-Star concert
    ▪ Club legends Ray Parlour and Lauren visit a coaching session at a local school
    ▪ The local Arsenal Supporters Club host a get-together in a Washington bar

    After touching down in Washington D.C. on Sunday evening, the team were straight into action with an intensive training session on Monday morning, to kick off our US summer tour.

    Training at the George Mason University as we build up to the MLS All-Star game on Wednesday, the players started with a short bike ride to warm up, before going into mat work and using foam rollers as a group.  

    The squad, including all three new signings then took to the field for some more dynamic warm-ups, weaving between poles and being given interactive challenges to keep them on their toes. These ranged from suddenly being thrown a tennis ball to test their quick reactions, to being told a member of club staff that they have to run towards - with the last player being punished with push-ups.

    They then upped the intensity of their training session by being divided into three groups to take part in rondos for 10 minutes. Open training then ended and the players went into more detailed tactical work.

    The squad relaxed back at the hotel in the afternoon, while elsewhere in the capital preparations stepped up for the All-Star game, a major event in the footballing calendar in America.

    The pre-match press conference will be held on Tuesday, with Wayne Rooney taking charge of the MLS All-Stars, and that will be followed by the Skills Challenge, featuring Jurrien Timber, Jorginho, Kai Havertz, Flo Balogun, Aaron Ramsdale and Marquinhos among others, in front of more than 12,000 spectators.

    But excitement is already building in Washington D.C., with an All-Star concert – featuring Kehlani – the main event in the city on Monday evening. Meanwhile, two members of our Invincibles squad Ray Parlour and Lauren dropped into a local soccer school to offer their expertise to some future players.


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