Colorado Rapids 0-3 Arsenal: Debut goal for Martinelli and Saka on scoresheet as youngsters down MLS side
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Arsenal started their US pre-season tour with a win, as Gabriel Martinelli scored his first goal for the club and a young Gunners team beat MLS side Colorado Rapids 3-0 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
Unai Emery's side took on the Stan Kroenke owned club who sit second-bottom of the MLS Western Conference, in a bid for fitness ahead of difficult pre-season games against Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.
Bukayo Saka opened the scoring with just 13 minutes on the clock, after he dinked his effort over goalkeeper Clint Irwin and the Colorado defence failed to stop the ball crossing the line.
18-year-old James Olayinka got his first Arsenal goal just before the half hour mark, as he drove through midfield before curling home a superb strike, one that he will remember for a long time to come.
Martinelli then got in on the act to make it 3-0 and grab his first goal for the club since arriving from Ituano earlier this month.
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The Brazilian teenager showed why Unai Emery parted with £6 million to bring him to North London, brilliantly chesting home a Dominic Thompson cross.
Fans were also rewarded with a glimpse of first-team stars Mesut Ozil, Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, as the trio came off the bench with 12 minutes left.
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The win means a successful start to pre-season for Arsenal, who play Bayern Munich on Thursday.
Olayinka was delighted to get his first goal for the club, saying: "I've been here for 12 years now, so to finally score for the first team is a great feeling.
"I'm sure everyone at home is happy and hopefully there are many more to come.
"I just picked the ball up on the edge of the area and when I looked up, I saw the keeper on the other side. I took a shot, made sure it was on target, and luckily it went in.
"I was actually on the floor when I kicked it, so when I looked up, it was just in time to see it hit the net. It's a great feeling. I'm just happy I got the goal really."
Emery was impressed with his young side, and urged them to continue impressing for more first-team opportunities.
"Our idea is to give every young player chances to be with us, first in the training ground and after playing matches like today," he said.
"The idea is to give them more chances in other matches. They will win the possibility to be with us with their performances."