If nothing else, at least Unai Emery can console himself with the thought that not every opponent will be as daunting as Manchester City. The fixture list was unkind for the new Arsenal manager and Pep Guardiola’s team duly continued where they left off last season. A new season, yet the same old story, for both these sides and another reminder of what we should probably have already known, namely that it will require an exceptional effort from any other team to deny City another Premier League title.
By the time it was all done, Emery had become the first Arsenal manager to lose his opening game since Terry Neill in 1976. It was the first time since 1936 that City have recorded back-to-back wins at Arsenal and perhaps the most startling part, as far as the rest of the league is concerned, is that it was achieved with Kevin de Bruyne and Leroy Sane restricted to substitute roles, no place for Vincent Kompany or Nicolas Otamendi and with David Silva working on his fitness back in Manchester.