The two Premier League clubs’ supporters from New York and New Jersey witnessed an exciting first half with both goals, but the game stalled in the second half due to several replacements from both teams.
Andre Onana, a new goalkeeper for United who was acquired from Inter Milan on Thursday for £44 million, did not play despite traveling to the United States to join the squad on its tour.
Back-up Fernandes assumed the captain’s role in place of defender Harry Maguire, and Tom Heaton started in goal.
When he was given space in the middle of the box, Brazilian winger Antony had the first opportunity for United, but he scuffed his effort, which drifted harmlessly wide.
Wednesday’s 5-0 victory over the MLS All Stars marked the start of Arsenal’s North American tour. The Gunners nearly scored first through Gabriel Martinelli, but Heaton made two excellent saves to stop the Brazilian.
At the halfway point, United seized the lead when Fernandes cut in from the right and unleashed a low left-foot shot that fooled Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.
Seven minutes later, England forward Sancho doubled the advantage after Arsenal defender Gabriel miskicked on the halfway line, allowing Sancho to elude his defenders and send the ball home with assurance.
Sancho played in a center role rather than his customary position on the wing because United is still looking for a central striker in the transfer market. He handled the adjustment well.
After the break, there was an unavoidable decrease of intensity, and United’s lead was never in jeopardy because both Erik Ten Hag and Mikel Arteta, the manager of Arsenal, utilized every member of their squads.
Kobbie Mainoo, 18, put up a promising performance in the middle of United’s midfield, and Fernandes was effusive in his appreciation.
Kobbie is a fantastic player who exhibits remarkable resiliency, in my opinion. Everyone is aware of it. He can attack and defend well, is strong, and is good with the ball.
Although he is still rather young, we believe he has a promising future. I hope he gets more minutes,” the Portuguese remarked.
At the conclusion of the game, an unprecedented circumstance occurred when both teams agreed to participate in a penalty shootout regardless of the outcome.
Both coaches agreed to use the opportunity to gauge their players’ resiliency from the spot as a learning opportunity, despite the fact that United won the shootout 5-3 and there was no real stake in the outcome.
Wednesday’s matchups between United and Real Madrid will take place in Houston, while the Gunners will take against Barcelona in Los Angeles.
Barca’s friendly match against Juventus, which was scheduled to take place later on Saturday, was postponed due to a viral gastroenteritis outbreak among the Spanish players.
In a statement, Barcelona stated that “a sizable portion of the blaugrana squad has a viral gastroenteritis.”
According to Spanish media, at least 12 players have become unwell.