Arsenal v Orlando City SC
Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Five things we learned as Arsenal beat Orlando City 3-1

Photo by Andrew Bershaw/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Arsenal beat MLS side Orlando City 3-1 in the Florida Cup tonight to maintain our unbeaten run in pre-season so far.

After fantastic wins over Ipswich, FC Nurnberg and Everton, the Gunners were made to work hard in our opening game of the Florida Cup at the Exploria Stadium.


Goals from Gabriel Martinelli, Eddie Nketiah and Reiss Nelson gave us a comfortable victory in the end.

Five things we learned as Arsenal beat Orlando City 3-1

Defensive worries:

Arteta started a back four of Cedric Soares, Rob Holding, Pablo Mari and Nuno Tavares in Orlando tonight, and we must say, they didn’t look comfortable at all – especially the left-footers.

A big gap between Mari and Holding gave the hosts a huge opportunity to score, but Ramsdale bailed us out. Then, the Spaniard and Tavares were at fault as the Gunners conceded a very avoidable goal.

Oleksandr Zinchenko will replace Tavares when he comes in, but we still don’t have a left-footed centre-half to cover for Gabriel Magalhaes. That is a worry going into the new season.

Nketiah impresses again:

Almost everybody expected Nketiah to leave Arsenal on a free transfer this summer. However, Mikel Arteta managed to convince the young Englishman to extend his stay at the Emirates, and that is looking like an excellent decision.

Nketiah has looked really good since the start of pre-season, and he was once again impressive tonight. He got his goal in the second half, which will make the headlines, but his performance before the break when we were struggling is what really caught our eye.

Unsurprisingly, the Englishman was named the Man of the Match.

Drop in quality

It really was a game of two halves tonight. Arsenal, despite the early goal, struggled in the first half and were arguably lucky to go into the break with the score level. The players who started the game just weren’t up for it, which is a shame.

In the second half, however, it was a completely different story. Our big guns were brought on, and Arsenal could’ve easily scored four or five goals.

The drop in quality between our first XI and our second team is huge, which is not a good sign at all.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles

The Englishman was handed a start in his favourite central midfield position tonight, but he just couldn’t get going.

It’s so frustrating to watch Maitland-Niles as we all know how talented he is, but what he showed in the middle of the park against Orlando was extremely underwhelming, to say the least.

It really doesn’t look like he wants to stay and fight for a place in the side, which is a real shame. It’s only a matter of time before he’ll be moved on this summer.

Gabriel Jesus will be a star

After three goals in two games, Arsenal fans were hoping to see Gabriel Jesus find the net again tonight, but the Brazilian couldn’t. However, he still was sensational in the 45 minutes that he played.

Just a few moments after coming on, the former Manchester City star created a chance out of absolutely nothing and almost found the back of the net. He was a constant threat and even played a big part in Nketiah’s goal.

It’s only the pre-season and we shouldn’t really get excited, but we just can’t help ourselves. Jesus looks like a star already and we can’t wait for the season to start to see him lead our line every week.

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