Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton have all played pre-season friendlies which have caught the eye this summer.
If your club has a good pre-season, it’s definitely a sign they are going to have a successful campaign, but we all know not to pay too much attention to results if they are not as you might have hoped. Hre are results which have stood out so far, including some Sunday League scorelines. Speaking of which…
ATV Irdning 0-22 Everton
A nice, proper pre-season shellacking against Austrian minnows in Marco Silva’s first game in charge of Everton, featuring four hat-tricks and the poor goalkeeper literally giving up.
Sheffield United 1-1 Inter
As far as illustrious friendly opponents go, Sheffield United played a blinder in getting Inter to visit Bramall Lane.
It also capped a remarkable day for David McGoldrick. Released by Ipswich Town at the end of the season, McGoldrick signed for the Blades on the morning of the game, then opened the scoring against the three-time European champions with a neat dink over Samir Handanovic.
Mauro Icardi levelled for Inter in a match which also saw the main grandstand renamed the Tony Currie Stand in honour of the United legend.
Bayern Munich 3-1 PSG
Two of European football’s big boys met in the International Champions Cup with both sides shorn of a number of players who competed at the World Cup.
There was still a wealth of talent on display, and PSG went into the break in front thanks to Timothy Weah’s opener, only for Bayern to score three times in 18 second half minutes through Javi Martinez, Renato Sanches and Joshua Zirkzee.
Halmstads 1-6 Crystal Palace
Roy Hodgson took Palace to the side with whom he began his managerial career 42(!) years ago.
The former England boss was inducted into Halmstads’ Hall of Fame prior to the match, which Palace dominated thanks to goals from Christian Benteke, Sullay Kaikai, James McArthur, Jason Puncheon and a Patrick Van Aanholt.
One worry for Hodgson, however, was the sight of Benteke limping off after scoring.
Liverpool 1-3 Borussia Dortmund
Jurgen Klopp also took on a former club as Liverpool met Dortmund in North Carolina, but this was all about Christian Pulisic.
The USA international scored twice and was also involved in the third in front of his adoring fans, with Klopp subsequently singing the attacker’s praises.
“I know Christian, I liked him since he was a kid. He’s a fantastic player, it’s deserved people think highly of him, in Germany it’s the same,” Klopp said.
The Liverpool boss also sent the rumour mill into overdrive by adding: “If, at one point, he will join us, I don’t know, but I like him. We respect contracts. There is no market I know about at the moment. We did our business and Dortmund did theirs.”
Arsenal 1-2 Brentford
Behind-closed-doors friendlies are the best kind of friendlies, and Arsenal’s behind-closed-doors friendly was so behind-closed-doors that nobody actually knew it was taking place until a Brentford player posted on social media while tagged at the Gunners’ training ground.
As such, details of the game are sketchy, but we do know that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored a fifth goal of pre-season, only for Bernd Leno to gift the visitors victory with a bit of a blunder.
Derby County 3-0 Southampton
One of the more intriguing storylines of the upcoming season will be how Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard fare in their first managerial roles.
On the evidence of this, Derby fans should be excited about their prospects under Lampard, as they put a strong Southampton side to the sword in the former Chelsea hero’s first match at Pride Park.
Chelsea loanee Mason Mount was among the players to impress, although Lampard stressed: “I don’t want to heap anything on him.”
Levante 3-4 Bournemouth
Any supporter making a trip abroad to watch a pre-season friendly wants a) a nice location, and b) some goals.
Bournemouth fans were given both as the Cherries beat Levante in a seven-goal thriller in La Manga. Six of the goals were scored in a frantic first half before Lewis Cook bagged a late winner with five minutes to go.
Oxford United 4-3 Leeds United
Arranged as part of the deal which saw Kemar Roofe join Leeds in 2016, Oxford boss Karl Robinson expressed his disappointment that the Whites brought a largely second-string outfit, with Roofe among the players missing.
Still, fans were given plenty of value for money as Oxford led 3-0 and 4-1 before Leeds mounted a comeback.
It’s also a decent excuse to shoehorn in this brilliant finish from another former Oxford player, Tyler Roberts.