Arsenal’s debutants made an immediate impact in the English Premier League, beating hosts Crystal Palace 2-0 on Friday.
Left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko scored the opening goal in the first half, while striker Gabriel Jesus created a number of chances and defender William Saliba produced a near-flawless performance in his first start for Arsenal.
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The Gunners continued to suffer discomfort in the second half before Palace defender Mark Guehi turned Bukayo Sakho’s attempted cross into his own net in the 85th.
Arsenal took the lead in the 20th from a well-worked corner, when Zinchenko met a long ball into the area and crossed towards Gabriel Martinelli, who nodded the ball home from close range.
Martinelli should have scored in the opening minutes after a run from Jesus, who dribbled into the box before turning the ball into the path of his fellow Brazilian, who sent his shot wide of the far post.
Zinchenko and Jesus both joined from Manchester City in the offseason, while Saliba was signed in 2019 but has spent the last three seasons on loan in his native France. The centre-back looked composed and confident on his league debut, making key saves as Palace chased down an equaliser.
Arsenal also needed two good saves from goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale to maintain their lead.
Ramsdale first reacted quickly to deflect a close header from Odson Edouard in the 42nd minute, then got down to block a shot from Eberechi Eze in the 54th minute.
For Arsenal, it’s been a better start to the season than last year, when they opened the campaign on Friday night but were beaten 2-0 by promoted Brentford and also lost their next two games.
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