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Arsenal vs Western Sydney Warriors

Following a two-nil victory against Sydney FC in Arsenal's first pre-season game, the Gunners played the second game of their Australian tour against Western Sydney Wanderers on the 15th July.Once again lining out at the ANZ Stadium to a capacity crowd of Aussie Arsenal fans, Arsene Wenger's men came up trumps in the Sydney sun thanks to an 11 minute first-half spell that seen Olivier Giroud, Aaron Ramsey and Mohamed Elneny find the net.Giroud cast speculation over his future to the side and performed well throughout his time on the pitch, opening the scoring in the 3-1 win.With speculative links to a host of Premier League clubs such as Everton and West Ham, as well as return to his native France, with Marseille linked, it would be easy to understand if Giroud's mind was elsewhere.Nevertheless, the striker was alert to begin what was to be an 11-minute burst of positive forward play from the Gunners.His goal was followed by strikes from Ramsey and Elneny, in what was another convincing, but admittedly expected victory for Wenger's men.The game took a while to get going when it kicked-off, which is understandable considering the little-or-no-stakes that come with a friendly encounter such as this one.The first moment of action came from the new man up-front, who has but the position of the aforementioned Giroud into uncertainty – Alexandre Lacazette.When a new signing gets off to a good start, even in a pre-season friendly, it can be easy to become overly enthusiastic, overly quickly – but thankfully, the Frenchman brought his good form from his cameo against Sydney into this game and was unlucky not to have his name on the scoresheet, as he got himself into good positions.One of these good positions seen him engineering some space in the Wanderer's box with some slick footwork, and forcing a stop from their goalkeeper Vedran Janjetovic.Soon after, the record signing found himself in some space, only for his touch to let him down after Robert Cornthwaite was caught deep under a looping cross from Alex Iwobi, only for the Blackburn-born Australian defender to recover and block the shot.Although played out on the left in this fixture, Wenger said after the game that he expects that Lacazette will mainly play in his preferred position of down the middle as a striker. With 33 minutes gone, Nacho Monreal burst into the box down the left, cutting the ball back to the onrushing Giroud, who's shot found the roof of the net to but the Gunners in the lead.The floodgates then opened, with Monreal once again the provider. This time, a long ball from the full back caught out a high Wanderers defensive line, which allowed Ramsey to rush clear and dink a finish over Janjetovic.The hosts were a little unfortunate for the third goal, where Arsenal's Egyptian midfielder Elneny managed to squirm a shot over the line, after a deflection off Brendan Hamill landed in his path to make the score line 3-0.Before half time, Elneny nearly had another goal, this one very unlucky not to find the net. He picked he ball up at a distance and launched a dipping 25-yard effort which cannoned off the bar, having left the keeper rooted to his spot. Giroud was unlucky not to convert the rebound, but it was perhaps the stand out shot of the game.The Gunners went in 3 goals to the good at half time, and Wenger made a litany of changes for the second half. Ten substitutions took to the field for the next 45, and the game took a little while to get going once again.Arsenal conceded their first goal of pre-season in the 57th minute in odd circumstances. After Wanderers had a good stretch of play, a ball was jettisoned across the box, and a Wanderers player connected and hit the crossbar with his shot. The ball then made its way back into play, only for an Arsenal player to pass the ball back to sub goalkeeper David Ospina, who picked the ball up in the heat of the moment, and an indirect free-kick was awarded from 6 yards out.All eleven Arsenal players flooded their own goal line for the free, which was passed back to Steven Lustica, who's first shot was blocked by the masses on the line, with his second attempt finding the net for a consolation. The game fizzled out a bit following the goal, Wanderers threatening with two long range shots that went wide of the goal and Arsenal testing Janjetovic once more in the final minute, this time Theo Walcott drawing a superb save at the death from the keeper.And with that, the game, and Arsenal's Pre-Season tour of Australia, came to a close. Another convincing win against a Sydney side, and next it's onto Asia to play against Bayern Munich and Chelsea.So what was learned from the two games? Not a great deal, in all honesty. While it was good to see new players and youngsters in action, both ties were fixtures that Arsenal were expected to win, even without a full squad of first teamers.The foundations are beginning to set, however and there weren't a lot of negatives either, which is good. Lacazette was lively over both the games, and one would hope that him being played on the right this fixture was just to test the waters – and now is the time to test the waters, as come Friday 11th August and the first game of the season against Leicester City, there needs to be a solid foundation in place.