Arsenal defeated Sydney FC 2-0 in their first pre-season friendly, thanks to goals from Per Mertesacker and Alexandre Lacazette.

In front of a crowd of 80,432, Arsenal put on a good show and controlled the game from start to finish, with a number of impressive performances from the youngsters.

Arsenal lined up in the 3-4-3 they ended last season in, with Sead Kolasinac played as a left sided centre back and youngsters Reiss Nelson and Cohen Bramall deployed as the wing backs.

The Gunners began brightly, stroking the ball around confidently. Welbeck managed their first shot on target with a tame effort from distance.

Arsenal continued their early pressure, with Reiss Nelson driving up the pitch and playing in Walcott. Walcott’s cross was blocked. Sydney failed to clear the resulting corner and Per Mertesacker was on hand to hook Arsenal into an early lead from the close range.

Arsenal looked much sharper than Sydney FC and were in control of the game, with Nelson a constant threat down the right hand side.

It was tidy footwork from him that created a decent chance for Walcott, but his shot was blocked. Another quick move, this time down the left, saw Bramall’s dangerous cross snuffed by a late challenge.

Sydney FC struggled to maintain possession in the Arsenal as Arsenal recovered their shape quickly. With Arsenal dominating, Nelson and Ozil combined again down the right to create a chance for Walcott, who’s shot to the near post was saved by Redmayne.

With half an hour gone, Sydney FC had their first real attack and almost scored. A through pass released the Sydeny FC attacker, who raced away from Mertesacker and forced Cech into a save. Matthew Simon got on the rebound, but couldn’t fit the net from a tight angle.

Arsenal retaliated with their attack. Walcott cut inside and worked Redmayne with an effort. Coquelin followed up with another shot that was again saved by Redmayne.

Arsenal nearly doubled their lead near the end of the half. Willock set on a mazy run through the middle of Sydney’s defence but couldn’t beat the in-form Redmayne.

Emi Martinez came on for Petr Cech in Arsenal’s only change at half-time. Nicolas Kuleski and Christopher Zuvela came on for Sydney.

Arsenal made their first chance of the half when Ozil was played in behind down the left. His cross found Nelson at the back post, but he made poor connection on the volley. Kolasinac nearly bundled one in when the following corner forced a scramble in the Sydney penalty area.

Sydney has their second chance of the game, when substitute Zuvela forcing Martinez into a good stop with a shot from the edge of the box.

While the Australian champions were looking livelier, Arsenal continued to look too quick for them. Nelson exploded past two defenders before crossing into the box. The ball fell to Bramall at the back bost, and his controlled effort with the outside of his was saved by Redmayne.

A poor backpass from Lokolingoy played Welbeck in. He squared it to Walcott, who’s shot was blocked by Ryall despite it being easier to score.

The referee spotted a handball and awarded Arsenal a penalty, but replays showed Ryall blocked the ball with his back.

Welbeck stepped up the spot but had his penalty saved by the impressive Redmayne. We’ll pretend that Welbeck was feeling guilty and missed on purpose.

With nearly 70 minutes gone, Arsenal changed their entire outfield team.

Alexandre Lacazette, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Nacho Monreal, Mohamed Elneny, Eddie Nketiah, Olivier Giroud, Granit Xhaka, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Alex Iwobi and Donyell Malen all came on.

Arsenal played the final twenty minutes of the game in a “just play anywhere” formation, with Maitland-Niles, Elneny and Monreal forming the back three.

Redmayne continued to be in good form, but was beaten by a shot from Nketiah. Fortunately for him it, it hit the post.

In the final ten minutes, Iwobi raced down the right and pulled the ball back to the penalty spot. Lacazette was on hand to deliver the moment every Arsenal fan wanted to see. It was a simple finish, but one that was very warmly received.

Sydney almost grabbed a late consolation after a loose pass from Elneny presented a chance on a plate. Martinez produced a sharp save to preserve Arsenal’s clean sheet.

The game finished with Arsenal as 2-0 winners.