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Palace defeat to Arsenal in Premier League opener

Crystal Palace
0
2
Arsenal
Gabriel Martinelli 20'
Guéhi 85'

Crystal Palace’s 2022/23 Premier League season began with defeat under the lights at Selhurst Park, as Gabriel Martinelli’s opener set Arsenal on their way to all three points.

Summary:

  • New signing Cheick Doucouré makes his Premier League debut.
  • Arsenal take the lead through Martinelli, who nods in from close range.
  • Edouard forces Ramsdale into a smart save from close-range.
  • HT: Palace 0-1 Arsenal
  • Eze is through one-on-one, but Ramsdale stands tall to make the block.
  • Schlupp and Mateta go close in quick succession.
  • Guéhi deflects Saka’s cross into his own net for Arsenal’s second.
  • FT: Palace 0-2 Arsenal

It’s always a special feeling when Premier League football returns in August. The anticipation was ramped up even more by the noise emanating from the Holmesdale, as a giant display honouring the club’s history was hoisted aloft as the players emerged.

Arsenal started the faster of the two sides, and Gabriel Jesus was a real threat in the opening exchanges. Their opening goal came from a set-piece, however, as Zinchenko was in space to head a deep delivery back across goal, and Martinelli could nod home.

Palace responded, and would have been level were it not for a smart stop from Aaron Ramsdale. It was a set-piece of their own this time, with Andersen the man at the far post – Edouard showed good strength to get to the ball, but his headed effort was saved.

A goal down at half-time, there was plenty for the Eagles to do after the restart. They emerged with real positivity, and should have been level almost straight away; Ebere Eze was slipped in behind, but could not beat Ramsdale one-on-one.

The visitors were a threat on the break – and Bukayo Saka came close from a rapid counter-attack – but it was who dominated proceedings in search of an equaliser.

Jeff Schlupp saw an effort deflected behind, while Jean-Philippe Mateta caused real problems after his introduction.

With an equaliser seeming the likeliest outcome, Arsenal’s second came as a real sucker-punch. It was an unfortunate goal to concede, too, as Marc Guéhi inadvertently deflected Saka’s cross into his own net.

With just five minutes remaining, it proved an insurmountable task for the Eagles to turn the game around, and Arsenal returned to north London with all three points.

Palace: Guaita (GK), Clyne, Andersen, Guéhi, Mitchell, Doucouré (Milivojevic, 73), Schlupp (Ebiowei, 86), Eze (Hughes, 86), Zaha, Edouard (Mateta, 58), Ayew.

Subs: Johnstone (GK), Ward, Richards, Riedewald, Plange.

Arsenal: Ramsdale (GK), White, Partey, Gabriel, Saka, Ødegaard (Lokonga, 90+1), Jesus (Nketiah, 83), Martinelli, Saliba, Xhaka, Zinchenko (Tierney, 83).

Subs: Turner (GK), Holding, Soares, Pépé, Nelson, Elneny.

Stay tuned for all the post-match reaction below.

22:45

Joachim Andersen says Palace were lacking a killer instinct in their defeat to Arsenal, but that there are still positives to draw from the game.

“We played really well after [the opening goal],” he said after full-time. “Then the last 15 to 20 minutes of the first-half and the second-half we played a really good game and we just need that little killer instinct to get the goal.

“I think we have at least two clear cut chances, and we have to score. We need to be aggressive, and we have to score goals to win games in the Premier League. We need to work on that.

“We were aggressive – we did exactly what we spoke about. To be in their faces, to be annoying. To just irritate them – they don’t like that, we know that.

“We played a good game and we didn’t get the reward that we deserved.”

From the boss

22:30

Patrick Vieira has been reacting to the game, and he says Arsenal’s clinical finishing was the difference in a tight game at Selhurst Park.

“The difference between the two teams today is that they scored those goals, and we created two really good chances to score,” he told Sky Sports after the match. “We were in a really good period in the second-half and we didn’t take our chances.

“Of course I’m disappointed, because I thought we could score a couple of goals today even though we didn’t create very much, but they took their chances and we didn’t.

“But football is about trying to score goals. We were playing against a good side. We had chances in both halves and we didn’t take it – in the game you get punished really hard.”

22:15

It wasn’t the result we wanted, but how good was it to have Premier League football back at Selhurst Park?

Full-time

90+3 mins

That’s full-time, and Palace’s season begins with defeat.

It was a tough evening after Arsenal took the early lead, but Palace responded and pushed forwards in vain to find the equaliser – only for the second goal to seal all three points for the Gunners.

Onto Anfield next week.

Stay tuned for all the post-match reaction.

Substitution

90+1 mins

Change for Arsenal as Ødegaard is withdrawn. Albert Sambi Lokonga will play the final few moments.

90 mins

Malcolm Ebiowei is not afraid to take players on, and he is giving Tierney a real headache in these dying moments.

Three minutes are added on.

Substitution

85 mins

Two changes for Vieira, as Will Hughes replaces Eze in midfield. Also introduced is Malcolm Ebiowei for his Premier League debut, on in place of Jeff Schlupp.

GOAL! Palace 0-2 Arsenal (Guéhi, OG)

84 mins

Arsenal double their lead, and now it’s a long way back for Palace.

It’s a really unlucky one too, as Bukayo Saka’s cross is inadvertently deflected into his own net by Marc Guéhi.

Substitution

81 mins

The pressure is ramping up now.

First a ball is driven across the face of goal, but Schlupp can’t make the decisive touch. Then Eze goes down in the box to widespread appeals for a penalty, but it isn’t given.

Arteta tries to sure the lead up with two substitutions, as Eddie Nketiah and Kieran Tierney replace Zinchenko and Jesus.

77 mins

Free-kick from Eze is cleared, but still the Eagles have possession.

It’s been all Palace since the restart – can they find that cutting edge in the final 15 minutes?

Selhurst Park under the lights
Selhurst Park under the lights

Substitution

73 mins

Doucouré won’t continue, and Luka Milivojevic takes his place.

71 mins

Ayew gets away from Zinchenko once again, but his delivery is just ahead of Mateta.

We have a prolonged break in play now – Cheick Doucouré is down receiving treatment.

67 mins

Good persistence from Zaha to win the ball back deep into the Arsenal half, and he draws the foul from Bukayo Saka. It’s a free-kick, and in a really promising position.

Yellow card

63 mins

A first booking for Palace, as Clyne is penalised for a foul on Martinelli.

61 mins

Excellent work from Schlupp on the right, and Mateta’s first involvement is to win Palace a corner.

Arsenal make a right meal of it and Gabriel almost thumps into his own net, but they are saved by the referee’s whistle.

Yellow card

59 mins

Ben White has caught the referee's attention once to often, and is shown a yellow card for bringing down Zaha.

Substitution

57 mins

It's cleared.

Vieira has seen enough, and JP Mateta is stripped and ready. He takes Edouard's place up-front.

56 mins

It’s Ødegaard with a curling, left-footed effort, but Guaita watches it wide.

Arsenal come again though, and they have a corner.

55 mins

Arsenal have a free-kick in really dangerous territory, just outside the area. Ødegaard and Martinelli are standing over it.

54 mins

More cries for handball, and again it’s an interesting shout.

This time it’s Zaha’s cross that bounces up and strikes White on the arm, but again the VAR declines to intervene.

Edouard challenges Ramsdale
Edouard challenges Ramsdale

CHANCE!

52 mins

Best chance of the game for Palace by far.

The corner is cleared and the Eagles break forward, with Zaha collecting the ball on the edge of the Arsenal area. He slips in Ebere Eze who is one-on-one with Ramsdale, but the Arsenal ‘keeper stands tall and makes the block.

Vital save.

49 mins

Arsenal have a corner.

47 mins

First attack for Palace after the restart. A long ball down the line finds Jordan Ayew and his delivery is a good one, but Arsenal scramble it away.

Ayew looks in the mood though, and he picks out Schlupp whose effort is deflected behind.

Early corner…

...but Ramsdale takes charge.

46 mins

We're back underway!

20:55

Big team talk underway for Patrick Vieira.

Here are the best shots from that first-half.

Half-time

45+2 mins

The corner is cleared, and the referee blows for half-time.

A frustrating start for the Eagles, but there were some real flashes of positivity towards the end and still plenty of time to turn this one around.

45+1 mins

One final chance?

Edouard bursts through and his shot is blocked behind. Corner.

Yellow card

45 mins

You feel that this is a sentence you may hear fairly often this season: Granit Xhaka has been booked.

It’s not your typical Xhaka booking, however, as the midfielder is penalised for diving in an attempt to draw a free-kick. He isn’t happy – but neither are the crowd at Selhurst.

We will have one added minute.

CHANCE!

42 mins

Ohhh, what a chance to draw level!

It’s actually a very good save from Ramsdale. The free-kick is floated towards the far post, where Andersen can nod across goal. Edouard shows good strength to get to the ball first, but Ramsdale gets a strong hand in the way.

41 mins

Naughty from Ben White.

Palace have an advantage as Schlupp is tripped by Jesus, and Zaha spins away from the Arsenal defender. He’s cynically brought down, and it’s another free-kick…

40 mins

...Arsenal clear, but Palace still have possession.

38 mins

Joachim, how do you do it?

Another glorious crossfield ball is plucked out of the sky with equal finesse by Tyrick Mitchell, who finds Zaha. The Ivorian is brought down and Palace have a free-kick in a very dangerous position…

34 mins

BIG appeals for handball as the ball drops from a height and is taken off Edouard’s foot by Gabriel’s right wrist.

VAR takes a quick look and it’s not given. Hmm…

30 mins

Ramsdale is not liking this pressure, and manages to poke the ball away from Edouard in the nick of time – the Frenchman was inches away from tapping into an empty net.

CHANCE!

28 mins

Good pressing from Palace almost pays dividends.

Aaron Ramsdale wants too much time to pick a pass, and in the end drives the ball straight at Odsonne Edouard. Red and blue shirts swarm forwards and Clyne picks out Zaha at the far post, but the flag is up for offside.

25 mins

Oh, how we’ve missed those during the off-season.

Joachim Andersen pulls out his party piece, launching a sumptuous 60-yard diagonal into the path of Wilfried Zaha. The winger takes it in his stride and delivers, but Arsenal can clear.

Ayew is challenged by Zinchenko
Ayew is challenged by Zinchenko

23 mins

How can Palace respond? The crowd are showing no sign of being quietened.

GOAL! Palace 0-1 Arsenal (Martinelli)

19 mins

Jesus wins a corner for Arsenal and the players in pink pour forwards.

The delivery finds Zinchenko unmarked at the far post, and he knocks it back across goal for Martinelli to nod home.

First blood to the visitors.

17 mins

More possession now for the hosts.

Jeff Schlupp does well to burst down the right, before Odsonne Edouard runs at the Arsenal back four.

Palace looking up for this.

14 mins

Welcome to the Premier League, Cheick Doucouré.

The new boy shows no signs of intimidation on his debut, sliding in excellently to win the ball from Martin Ødegaard – and receive the adulation of the fans in the process.

9 mins

First glimpse of Wilfried Zaha as Palace break forwards.

He’s found by Andersen, and skips past Ben White before Saliba comes across to cover. Better from Palace.

6 mins

Wow - just look at this.

4 mins

Huge chance for the visitors.

It's created by new signing Jesus, who creates space on the edge of the box but sees his shot blocked by Guehi. Martinelli is the first to the rebound, but fires wide.

3 mins

It's Arsenal with the early possession, and they win a soft free-kick on the right. It's taken quickly, but Mitchell sweeps up the danger.

Kick-off

1 min

We're underway.

COME ON, PALACE!

1957

Palace are in their new red-and-blue home shirts, Arsenal are sporting their pink (?) third kit.

A reminder of the two sides:

Palace: Guaita (GK), Clyne, Andersen, Guéhi, Mitchell, Doucouré, Schlupp, Eze, Ayew, Edouard, Zaha.

Arsenal: Ramsdale (GK), White, Partey, Gabriel, Saka, Ødegaard, Jesus, Martinelli, Saliba, Xhaka, Zinchenko.

19:55

Here come the teams.

Selhurst Park is making some noise here. There is a HUGE display in the Holmesdale, as the old structure of the Crystal Palace building is hung from the roof of the stands.

'Era after era, since 1861' reads the banner.

19:50

The sides are in the tunnel, and the Holmesdale is in full voice.

19:40

The boys are out warming up.

Not long to go now...

19:25

Speaking of Palace full-backs, Tyrick Mitchell has been talking to Sky Sports before kick-off.

“Firstly, I'm feeling v confident like the rest of the team,” he said. “It was a good season [last year] and I'm just trying to kick on and get  better this season.

“[We need] more consistency - playing better as a team. From last season to now I feel like we’re more of a team and we know how the manager wants us to play. It’s just building.

“We know that Arsenal are a dangerous team and every season is different.

“We can look at [last season’s result] and see that we’re capable of beating teams like Arsenal, but this is a new season and we have to replicate it.”

19:15

New season – and a new look programme to boot.

As Palace begin a tenth straight season in the Premier League, check out tonight’s issue for an in-depth interview with a man who has seen it all first-hand: Joel Ward.

The defender talks pre-season tours from Exeter to Hong Kong, a decade of top-flight football, his secret skiing desires and why he has always wanted a pet lion – he even knows what to call it too.

Plus features from new columnist Doc Brown, messages from Vieira, captain Luka Milivojevic and chairman Steve Parish and plenty more!

You can purchase your issue by clicking HERE.

19:10

How good does the pitch at Selhurst Park is look?

A pristine surface like that takes hundreds of hours of hard graft – check it out:

Selhurst pitch works time lapse

Team news

19:00

The lineups are in.

The big news is a debut for new midfield signing Cheick Doucouré, who starts alongside Jeff Schlupp and Eberechi Eze in a mouthwatering trio.

The only change from last week’s friendly against Montpellier is the introduction of Nathaniel Clyne in place of Joel Ward.

Odsonne Edouard leads the line, supported by Jordan Ayew and Wilfried Zaha.

Here is Patrick Vieira’s first starting XI of the 2022/23 Premier League season:

Palace: Guaita (GK), Clyne, Andersen, Guéhi, Mitchell, Doucouré, Schlupp, Eze, Ayew, Edouard, Zaha.

Subs: Johnstone (GK), Ward, Milivojevic, Mateta, Hughes, Ebiowei, Richards, Riedewald, Plange.

Arsenal: Ramsdale (GK), White, Partey, Gabriel, Saka, Ødegaard, Jesus, Martinelli, Saliba, Xhaka, Zinchenko.

Subs: Turner (GK), Tierney, Nketiah, Holding, Soares, Pépé, Lokonga, Nelson, Elneny.

Thank you, Christian

18:45

Some breaking news pre-match…

From the boss...

18:40

Patrick Vieira was keen to emphasise that this Arsenal side is a different proposition to that of April, and after the shrewd additions of Gabriel Jesus, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Fabio Vieira they have looked threatening in their warm-up fixtures.

“It will be a completely different game,” he said in his pre-match press conference. “I think with the new players they have in the squad of course they are a better team. They had really good games during the pre-season.

“I think they’re in a better place than last year. The new players they’ve brought in, they are much stronger. They have the squad to challenge and be closer to the title.

“We know that it is going to be challenging but I believe that we have the tools to make it difficult for them, to make it challenging for them. Last year at home with the support we had we had some really good matches, and it will be important to keep it that way.”

Read the manager’s pre-match thoughts in detail HERE.

18:30

The stage is set.

18:20

The lads have arrived in SE25…

Last time out

18:10

There could hardly be a better blueprint for Patrick Vieira and his staff than the last meeting between these two sides.

When Arsenal arrived in south London in April, they had won five away games in succession and were building momentum in their push for a Champions League position – but it soon came grinding to a halt.

First-half goals from Jean-Philippe Mateta and Jordan Ayew, followed by a Wilfried Zaha penalty after the break, saw the Eagles cruise to a famous three points.

More of the same tonight?

Match Action: Crystal Palace 3-0 Arsenal

Welcome to south London…

18:00

Here we go again.

Strap yourselves in, because the Premier League is back for the 2022/23 campaign.

No one can say for sure what will happen between now and May, but you can be guaranteed a rollercoaster of emotion – and it all starts here.

Arsenal are the opposition tonight and they have impressed in pre-season, but Patrick Vieira’s men will be keen to show they can build on the often-scintillating football of last season and put the Gunners to the sword once again.