Sydney FC vs Arsenal Highlights: Football live scores, blog

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    European giants Arsenal will make their first appearance in Australia in 40 years when they take on defending A-League champions Sydney FC. Catch all the live scores, highlights and action on The Roar from 8pm (AEST).

    Not since 1977 have the 13-time Premier League champions played on Australian soil and they’ll be out to break the drought in their first of two bumper friendlies.

    The Gunners are fresh off their third FA Cup championship in four years, thanks to a 2-1 win over Chelsea in May. Despite this, Arsenal will take to ANZ Stadium off the back of an innocuous fifth-place finish in the Premier League.

    While they did win two-thirds of their games, they were too far off the title race to be legitimate threats, yet too far up the ladder to be considered flops. They were just in there really.

    Speaking of domestic results, hosts Sydney FC just completed arguably the greatest season in the A-League’s short history, losing only one game out of 29 and breaking a host of records on their way to the title.

    The Sky Blues finished it off in an absolute thriller of a grand final, beating Melbourne Victory in a penalty shootout for their third A-League title.

    “Arsenal is a club that a lot of football coaches in Australia would look at and admire the way they play,” said Sydney coach Graham Arnold.

    “We know it will be a massive crowd and there will probably be more Arsenal fans than Sydney FC but it’s for the good of the game in this country.

    To get the clubs like Arsenal to come out and promote football in our country is big for us.”

    While Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger continued the friendly nature of the contest, he was a little short on how his team are going to approach a side they have never seen play.

    “I don’t know a lot about them but I know they have been very successful,” he said.

    “It will be good to have to try and adapt quickly to a team that we don’t know.

    “I’m sure we’ll meet two teams of quality and two teams that will play with plenty of enthusiasm against us to show their level. It will be difficult games.”

    Team news
    In huge news for Arsenal fans, new signing Alexandre Lacazette is set to make his debut for the club against Sydney, the Frenchman having just broken the Gunners’ transfer fee record.

    Wenger has brought a strong side to accompany him, with top stars like Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Theo Walcott, Olivier Giroud and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

    The big omission from the squad is Chilean star Alexis Sanchez.

    Meanwhile, Arnold has been hit hard in the postseason, with a host of his top players leaving the club.

    International marquee men Filip Holosko and Milos Dimitrijevic have both been signed away overseas, while local hero Danny Vukovic has been given the chance at a lifelong dream in Europe.

    Bernie Ibini is another big loss, taking a big money offer in the MLS.

    Prediction
    Sydney are depleted at the moment and while the English giants may be taking these games as an opportunity to try out new combinations and systems, that won’t be enough of a let up for the Sky Blues to sneak in.

    Arsenal to win 3-0

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