Boreham Wood manager Luke Garrard was very impressed with Unai Emery’s Arsenal side at the weekend, even if he was also a bit disappointed about the scoreline.

Speaking after the game, Garrard didn’t hold back in his praise for the two Arsenal sides his team faced, and suggested the players were probably a bit more fired up than usual trying to impress their new manager.

“They’re the best team I have ever faced in my career,” the Boreham Wood boss said. “You look at the two sides they put out, they’re frightening. They were here to put on a show for their new manager. Killer, ruthless – they were ready to hit us with every blow they could.”

For Garrard himself, there were some mixed emotions. Of course watching his team lose so heavily isn’t ideal, but as an Arsenal fan himself, he can’t help but be a bit excited for the club he supports.

“As a proud Arsenal fan it was massive to be the first manager to shake Unai Emery’s hand in England,” he added, before talking about the rewards for his team to play against such a strong side. “It was such a worthwhile exercise, it will benefit us down the line. I was a little gutted about the scoreline but I have to look through that.”

Arsenal players hopefully managed to build their confidence and fitness with the win. Boreham Wood players had a chance to test themselves against one of the best teams in the country. Both head coaches got a good look at all of those players.

Overall, it was a worthwhile day. Even more so because it allowed local Arsenal fans to watch the team before their club’s world tour.

Now the tough fixtures get underway, with matches against Atletico Madrid and PSG next week. We’ll see how the team does against higher level opposition.