Kai Havertz might not have displayed his best volleying skills in the skill challenge, but he certainly made an impact by scoring his first goal for Arsenal on Wednesday night.
In a dominant performance, the Gunners overwhelmed the MLS All-Stars, who were managed by Wayne Rooney, with an impressive record-breaking 5-0 victory.
The scoring spree began with Gabriel Jesus’ remarkable chip from outside the area, followed by Leandro Trossard doubling the lead in the 23rd minute.
Shortly after half-time, Jorginho confidently converted a penalty, and late in the game, both Martinelli and Havertz found the back of the net to complete the rout at Audi Field.
Despite facing ridicule for his below-par performance in various skill challenges, the £65 million signing from Chelsea, Kai Havertz, responded with the perfect answer on the pitch.
After becoming the first player in history to record zero points in the “Cross and Volley” challenge, Havertz faced criticism online.
During the challenge, he hit the woodwork and sent several efforts over the bar as his teammates provided crosses, and his performance in the Touch Challenge also left room for improvement.
However, all of that criticism became inconsequential when Havertz proved his ability to volley footballs into the net in the 89th minute of the match against the best MLS players.
His goal demonstrated that he can indeed deliver impressive performances when it truly counts.
Kai Havertz scores his first goal for Arsenal 😤
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) July 20, 2023
In a skillful display, Brazilian winger Marquinhos elegantly curled the ball towards the far post. The ball sailed over the head of a defender and perfectly dropped for Kai Havertz.
Demonstrating excellent ball control, Havertz deftly chested the ball down before unleashing a powerful left-footed strike, emphatically smashing it into the back of the net.
The goal showcased Havertz’s composure and technical ability, leaving fans in awe of his talent on the field.
Kai Havertz celebrated his goal with arms outstretched, and his teammates were visibly thrilled for him, congratulating him on the achievement.
In addition to Havertz’s impressive performance, Jurrien Timber, who was acquired for £34 million from Ajax, made a strong impression in his debut.
Declan Rice, the marquee signing at £105 million, showcased his usual tidiness during his 25-minute cameo appearance in the second half.
Havertz, coming on as a second-half substitute, played in a midfield three on the left side. Mikel Arteta appreciates his versatility, which adds valuable options to the team’s tactics and formation.
“He gives us something different with his quality and his height,” Arteta said, as per theBBC.
“For example, he can be the target man if we need to beat the press. He’s playing at the attacking midfield position for now but I’m sure throughout the season he’ll be used in different positions.”