At the fourteenth time of asking, Arsene Wenger finally got the better of Jose Mourinho as Arsenal collected the Community Shield on Sunday.
The Emirates Stadium coach has much to boast about since becoming Gunners boss way back in 1996, including three Premier League titles and six FA Cup successes. But he has had little fortune when he has been paired against Mourinho in the past, with the Portuguese having been undefeated for Chelsea against his French rival in the 13 previous games spanning 11 years.
Yet an Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain goal in the first half was enough to give Arsenal a 1-0 win over the Premier League champions on Sunday afternoon, as they held onto a Community Shield they also won last year when they defeated Manchester City. Speaking after the match, Wenger was critical of the Wembley surface but grateful that his side head into the season in good health.
“We have suffered physically today and the pitch was not great,” Wenger, who has now won 15 honours since succeeding Bruce Rioch almost 19 years ago, told BT Sports. “But overall it’s good because in pre-season we have been solid defensively. Pre-season has gone quite well. We have no big injuries at the moment apart from Jack Wilshere who we lost yesterday.”
Meanwhile, there was a debut for former Petr Cech who moved from Chelsea to Arsenal for £11million earlier this summer. The Czech Republic international – who won four Premier League titles, four FA Cups, three League Cups, a UEFA Champions League and a UEFA Europa League with the Blues – endured a fairly comfortable afternoon, as he kept his former pals at bay throughout.