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Premier League on tour, Saturday roundup: Arsenal only club to fall

Jul 26, 2014, 11:51 PM EDT


One of the day’s most anticipated games saw Arsenal kept off the scoresheet, but with Thierry Henry facing his former team (and Gedion Zelalem starting for the Gunners), the final score was always going to be secondary in Harrison, N.J. Starting with a tribute to the team’s biggest star (right) and ending with victory for the home side, Arsenal’s visit to Red Bull Arena was the Premier League’s only Saturday loss on U.S. soil.

Aston Villa, Tottenham, and Manchester United were also in action on Saturday. Here’s how their friendlies, as well as Arsenal’s, turned out:

New York Red Bulls 1-0 Arsenal

There’s just something about the Red Bulls that Arsenal can’t figure out. New York won the Emirates Club in North London three years ago, and today, in the face of the Gunners’ chance at redemption, the Supporters’ Shield winners defended a 32nd minute goal from Bradley Wright-Phillips, remaining undefeated (albeit in two, meaningless games) against Henry’s former club.

Houston Dynamo 0-1 Aston Villa

An even game with few chances tilted the visitors’ way in the 41st minute, with Joe Bennett’s header from an Andreas Weimann cross beating Tyler Deric for the game’s only goal. (For Villa and Dynamo fans that missed it, the entire match can be seen on YouTube.)

Chicago Fire 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur


Harry Kane’s fifth minute goal put Barclays Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur ahead for good in a 2-0 friendly victory over the Chicago Fire played in front of 17,156 at Toyota Park Saturday night.

Kane — who threw out the first pitch at Wrigley Field prior to Thursday’s Cubs-Padres game — capitalized when Fire center back Jeff Larentowicz failed to control a ball just outside the penalty area, turning over possession to Spurs midfielder Lewis Holtby. Holtby deftly flicked the ball over to Kane, who easily beat Sean Johnson to the near post for the goal.

Aaron Lennon added a second six minutes from time.

Manchester United 3-2 Roma

Opening Champions Cup play, the Red Devils got two goals from Wayne Rooney, with their star forward’s “unbelievable” assist (according to Louis van Gaal) setting up another before halftime. A goal from near the center line via Miralem Pjanic saw Roma break through in the second, with Francesco Totti’s late penalty conversation salvaging a respectable score.

[ MORE: Despite win,  Van Gaal disappointed with performance ]

  1. trugun - Jul 27, 2014 at 1:39 AM

    C’mon fellas a bit of fairness please Arsenals players only started back to training last Monday. Arsenal still have a complete first team on holiday, treat the game for what it was a friendly, were the Red Bulls to play Arsenal in September or October I think you would be shocked by the scoreline.

    • jslip1 - Jul 27, 2014 at 2:56 PM

      Arsenal have no excuses. Sure it’s preseason and only meaningless because there’s no points involved, but MLS teams DO have something to prove. I think the shocking part of the scoreline in Sept./Oct. would be how close it still was.

      Maybe we should continue to harp on the “Arsenal as consummate underperformers” narrative?

  2. cfutch - Jul 27, 2014 at 2:22 AM

    MLS teams just cant win. If they lose people say “MLS sucks” If they win people say “they only won cuz their in preseason” Id rather mls not play these teams its a waste of time

    • medic0nduty - Jul 27, 2014 at 1:32 PM

      You only get to be the best by playing the best. And I’d be willing to wager that the people that make those comments know next to nothing about MLS.

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