Ramsdale leaves the warm up early
It was a big night for Aaron Ramsdale at Selhurst Park. For the first time in his Arsenal career the England ‘keeper was sporting the number one shirt after the departure of Bernd Leno to Fulham earlier this week.
Following a slight dip in his form in the second half of last season the 24-year-old would have been keen to show he was back on track this time around. In order to get himself mentally set, Ramsdale left the warm up slightly ahead of the rest of his teammates. This is something that he does every game as he seeks to get himself in peak psychological condition. It seemed to do the trick as he pulled off a sublime save from Odsonne Edouard just before half time.
Jover the star again
Set pieces were a huge part of Arsenal’s improvement last season. In fact the Gunners scored the highest proportion of their goals from them of any team in the Premier League. The man largely to thank for that was Nicolas Jover, the set piece coach signed from Manchester City.
As they begin the new season it seems the Frenchman’s influence has not waned on this Arsenal side. The corner from Bukayo Saka to find Oleksandr Zinchenko in acres of space at the back post in the build up to Gabriel Martinelli’s goal was clearly one straight from the training ground and it was no surprise to see Mikel Arteta turn to hug Jover immediately after the ball hit the back of the net.
Arteta delivers second half message
Impromptu team talks are nothing new for Mikel Arteta. Going back to project restart, the Spaniard used midgame stoppages to coach his players and this game was no different.
As Cheick Doucoure went down injured, Arteta yelled at Martin Odegaard to summon the team over for a few words of motivation during a moment when Arsenal were under the cosh. The instruction appeared to be to try to hold on to the ball and look to use the space in behind for the pacey attackers to run into. It had the desired effect as finding Saka in behind late in the game proved crucial to bringing about Marc Guehi’s own goal.