The NRMA Insurance Western Sydney Wanderers have gone down fighting 3-1 to English Premier League giants Arsenal in an entertaining clash at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night.
Oliver Giroud, Ian Ramsey and Mohamed Elneny got on the scoresheet for the Gunners, with Steven Lustica pulling one back for the Red & Black.
New signings Roly Bonevacia, Michael Thwaite, Josh Risdon, Chris Herd, Mark Tokich and marquee Oriol Riera all made their debut for the Wanderers in the clash.
The match began evenly with Vedran Janjetovic making a number of critical saves to keep the Wanderers in the game.
Some creative work from Bonevacia helped Abraham Majok get into the box, only to be crowded out by Arsenal’s defenders.
Arsenal went into the lead with Nacho Monreal leading the charge, cutting back to Giroud who chipped it into the back of the net.
Minutes later Arsenal would double their lead with Monreal sending a long ball to Ramsey who lobbed Janjetovic.
Before the end of the first half, Arsenal would make it three as Mohamed Elneny’s deflected strike left Janjetovic with no chance.
The Wanderers fought bravely in the second half and were rewarded for their hard work after a back pass from Ramsey was awarded.
The Red & Black were awarded an indirect free kick and after some chaos in the box, Lustica poked home to give the Wanderers a memorable goal.
The Wanderers were able to silence Arsenal for the remainder of the second half as the score finished 3-1.