Last season’s successes will live long in the memory for Manchester City. They now turn there attention to Wembley’s prestigious curtain raiser for the new season. Meanwhile Arsenal look to land an early blow on the current European champions and take their first opportunity of the season to land some silverware in the 2023 FA Community Shield.
Manchester City reached the pinnacle of European and domestic football last season. On the way to an historic treble they retained their title ahead of a tough challenge from Arsenal, defeated rivals Manchester United in the FA Cup Final and overcame Europe’s finest outfits to lift the Champions League for the first time in their history.
The previous season will never be forgotten on the blue side of Manchester. However once you have achieved it all, where do you go next?
Unfortunately for their rivals, Pep Guardiola does not seem to have lost his hunger for winning and has already set his sights on more silverware in 2023/24. Starting with the Community Shield showdown with Arsenal at Wembley.
Erling Haaland led the way for the European champions last season, breaking the all-time Premier League goal tally on his way to scoring 52 goals across all competitions.
The Norwegian hasn’t looked like slowing down in pre-season either. Guardiola described him as ‘fitter’ now than when he first signed last summer when he netted twice in City’s first pre-season victory against Yokohama F Marinos in Japan.
He could easily be the match winner once again on Sunday 6 August when last season’s top two battle it out for the first piece of silverware of the domestic season.
Last season was a roller coaster for Arsenal. They were the closest competition to Man City for the vast amount of the season, pushing them all the way before falling agonisingly short of their first title for 19 years in May.
Yet Arsenal fans can take plenty of positives. It was their best season in years led by a spine of young, talented players who will have the sights set on going one step better heading into the new campaign.
Added to that they have also splashed the cash in a further attempt to close the gap to City the season – spending a combined £200 million on West Ham’s Declan Rice, Kai Havertz from Chelsea and Dutch defender Jurrien Timber from Ajax.
Arsenal fans will be looking to their £105 million man Declan Rice to lead the way this campaign. He captained West Ham to European success in the UEFA Conference League in June and the Gunners will be hopeful that he can bring similar success to North London.
Kai Havertz also brings a large reputation with him to the Emirates. Despite not fulfilling his potential at Chelsea, there is hope that if Arteta can lock down his best position then Havertz could also play a crucial role at Wembley in helping Arsenal to win their first trophy since 2020.
Heading into the 2023/24 season Man City will be the favourites for every competition they enter, including the Community Shield match-up with last season’s runners up Arsenal – who will be desperate to one-up them this time around.
The likelihood is these two teams will be the ones to beat in the league again this season and a win for either side could be a crucial psychological blow even this early in the season.
However there has been some disturbance amongst the Man City squad. Like Arenal they have also lost their club captain this summer after Ilkay Gündoğan sealed a move to Barcelona.
On top of that the Premier League champions may also lose winger Riyad Mahrez who looks likely to join Al Ahli. Kevin De Bruyne is also yet to feature in pre-season following an injury he picked up during their 1-0 win over Inter Milan in the Champions League final in June.
This could pave the way for Arsenal to lay down an early marker during the Community Shield clash.
Their record in the competition could also be a key factor ahead of the match. The last time the two sides played out the season’s curtain raiser at Wembley Stadium the Gunners came away with a comfortable 3-0 win.
It’s all up for grabs. Guardiola’s side will want to showcase their hunger hasn’t dwindled, Arsenal will want prove they’re willing to go the distance once again.
Ultimately both teams will be desperate secure their first trophy of the season.
There is a lot to be excited about for Arsenal and Manchester City going into the new season. Experience it with Ambro. We have hospitality packages available at The Emirates and The Etihad Stadium guaranteeing a great service and experience.
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