Gabriel Martinelli helped Arsenal fire the first three points of the Premier League season in a 2-0 win over Crystal Palace.
Artinelli went home after 20 minutes as the Gunners made a promising start at Selhurst Park.
And as the hosts made a quick comeback after the break in the second half, which saw some chances for both sides, the wind was pulled firmly out of their sails when Bukayo Saka’s cross crossed Mark Guhi to take away the game. moved out of his head.
Arsenal came to Selhurst Park hoping to avoid a repeat of last season’s shock opener when they lost 2-0 at Brentford.
The night began with last-minute drama for the hosts, who announced the departure of Christian Benteke from DC United after six seasons with the club.
Gabriel Jesus was one of three debutants from Mikel Arteta’s side, with Oleksandr Zinchenko and William Saliba also named in the Gunners’ starting XI.
Arsenal received a shot first when Jesus deftly worked his way into the box, dodging two Palace shirts, before his shot bounced off the cavity.
The ball landed at Martinelli’s feet at the edge of the field, but the Brazilian effort went well into the face of the goal.
Moments later it was Zinchenko who nearly deflected a shot of his own from the same spot, his effort better directed but Vicente Guetta batted.
The Eagles worked back at the end of their attack, Eberechie Eze and Wilfried Zaha exchanged passes to take the ball down the left bank, but were unable to create any real opportunities.
The Gunners piled under the pressure, their debutants showing no sign of a first-game setback in front of the infamous Holmesdale stand.
They finally got the success they were looking for from the set-piece, with Zinchenko joining in the air first before Martinelli capitalized on his previous miss, heading in front of a crowded goal to nod into the opener.
Guetta kept the visitors from doubling their advantage quickly, turning away a dangerous corner later.
Palace’s best chance came at the end of the half when Joachim Andersen found himself in the box to meet a free-kick, which he passed on goal.
Odsonne Edouard, who earned his place in Patrick Vieira’s starting XI after scoring a brace in the Eagles’ final friendly against Montpellier, was in a good position in the center of the field and ducked to meet the ball but Aaron Ramsdale straight. But directed his effort.
The Frenchman found one last chance to level before the break, but gave the hosts the second best of the half.
Palace looked brighter after the resumption and could have leveled off after Zaha issued a pin-point pass to set Ease one-on-one in the center of the box, but the South London’s capped his effort. failed.
What should have been an easy clearance for Arsenal, which turned into a scare after the ball bounced off several players and went into the hands of Ramsdale, who somehow let it slip away before recovering.
Neither side was able to create many more opportunities, although the hosts asked the Gunners a lot in the second period.
However, any point-sharing hopes were dashed in the 85th minute when Saka’s cross deflected from the unfortunate Gui’s head into the bottom left corner.