Striker Olivier Giroud has warned the rest of the Barclays Premier League that Arsenal can only get stronger over the course of the season.
The FA Cup winners dismantled defending champions Manchester City 3-0 to win the Community Shield at Wembley on Sunday.
However, City boss Manuel Pellegrini selected something of a makeshift side, with Willy Caballero starting ahead of England's Joe Hart, several other regulars missing after World Cup duty and summer signings Bacary Sagna and Frank Lampard, brought in on loan from New York City FC, watching on from the stands.
Of course, much sterner challenges will lie ahead for the Gunners, but Giroud - who cracked home a sublime third goal from 25 yards in the second half - believes the additions of £30million Chile forward Alexis Sanchez, France international Mathieu Debuchy and promising young defender Calum Chambers, as well as Colombia goalkeeper David Ospina, can stand them in good stead to finally last the distance over the next nine months.
Arsenal 3 Manchester City 0 player ratings
Arsenal 3 Manchester City 0 player ratings
1/24 Arsenal: Wojciech Szczesny
Fans’ favourite had surprisingly little to do. Dealt well with two efforts from Jovetic but was otherwise untested as Arsenal coasted to victory.6/10
2/24 Mathieu Debuchy
Could not have wished for easier “competitive” debut. Strong in the tackle – one important block on Nasri – and got forward at every opportunity.6
3/24 Calum Chambers
Another encouraging debut for the Gunners. Quiet but effective, he showed why Wenger was willing to allow Vermaelen to depart.6
4/24 Laurent Koscielny
Cool and calm but did not have much to worry about. Helped out Chambers in defence before being replaced by Monreal at the interval due to injury.6
5/24 Kieran Gibbs
Enjoyed numerous chances to get forward as Arsenal began with confidence and also dealt well with sporadic threats posed by Navas after the break.7
6/24 Aaron Ramsey
Fulcrum of Arsenal’s good work picked up where he left off last season with a goal at Wembley. A constant threat whenever he came forward.8
7/24 Mikel Arteta
Often divides opinion among fans but helped control game from middle of the park. Rarely lost possession and patrolled the area in front of defence.6
8/24 Alexis Sanchez
Multimillion-pound arrival showed pace and potential on right wing. Fine ball through to Sanogo led to second goal before he went off at interval. 7
9/24 Jack Wilshere
Seemed to spend an inordinate amount of time on the ground – one such incident leading to Cazorla’s opener. Good with the ball but could do so much more.7
10/24 Santi Cazorla
Afforded time and space to come inside and test City and he showed fine composure and footwork to make space to score the opening goal.7
11/24 Yaya Sanogo
Has won plaudits for pre-season form but still yet to convince on main stage. Dragged wide but held ball up well for Ramsey to steer in Arsenal’s second.6
12/24 Olivier Giroud
Much-maligned forward replaced Sanogo and made an instant impact with a fantastic finish from distance to remind people of his qualities.7
13/24 Manchester City: Willy Caballero
Argentinian debutant was given a chance to impress in place of Joe Hart but struggled to convince. Quick off his line to block an effort from Sanchez.5
14/24 Gaël Clichy
Looked uncomfortable in an unfamiliar right-back berth before a belated return to more familiar surroundings following the introduction of Richards.5
15/24 Dedryck Boyata
Sent off against the Gunners in 2010 and again struggled against the Londoners. Cumbersome, positionally poor and to blame for Arsenal’s second goal.5
16/24 Matija Nastasic
Has struggled to convince fully in sporadic appearances. Slight deflection for Giroud’s goal. His display will not have threatened Vincent Kompany’s place.5
17/24 Aleksandar Kolarov
Unable to get forward to any great effect as City were pinned back by Arsenal. Troubled Debuchy at times before being replaced by Richards.6
18/24 Jesus Navas
Spaniard displayed tricky feet and looked for openings but was largely ineffective. Provided a cross for Jovetic to hit the post but substituted late on.6
19/24 Yaya Touré
Ivorian powerhouse traditionally enjoys his Wembley outings but was lethargic and uninterested here. A disappointing display from such a sublime talent.5
Has not threatened the place of his near-namesake Fernandinho. Had too much to do alongside a languid Touré. Dragged wide and brought down Ramsey.6
21/24 Samir Nasri
Delighted in belittling Arsenal fans pre-match but it was his former adorers who had the last laugh. The Frenchman made no impact and lasted just a half.5
22/24 Stevan Jovetic
Has sparkled in pre-season but was given little to work with here. Hit the post before blazing over and forced Szczesny into a fine save. City’s best, though.7
23/24 Edin Dzeko
Gave Arsenal food for thought with his physicality and direct running, but only on occasion. Taken off for James Milner early in the second period.6
24/24 David Silva
Replaced boo-boy Nasri at half-time and fizzed around with imagination. Was unable to engineer the great comeback City required, though.6
World Cup winners Lukas Podolski, Per Mertesacker and Mesut Ozil have all now returned to Arsenal's Hertfordshire base ahead of the opening Premier League match at home to Crystal Palace, after which Arsenal travel to Istanbul for the first leg of what is a crunch Champions league play-off against Besiktas.
"When our Germans join us, we will be stronger for sure and hopefully until May," said Giroud, whose fine strike helped the substitute collect the sponsors' man of the match award.
"That (the championship) is the target. Last year we did well until March. We had a bad run after, but we really wanted to come back and be stronger than last year,"
Giroud, 27, believes the arrival of Sanchez from Barcelona will add another attacking dimension to the Gunners' already formidable frontline.
"Like Mesut when he signed for Arsenal, it is always easy to play with these kind of players," said Giroud.
"I think he will maybe need some more games to adapt his game to the Premier League, but that is normal.
"He is a fantastic player, so I think he will [have] a great season.
"He has different qualities to me, Yaya Sanogo and Joel Campbell. He can bring his pace and his technique in the centre of the park and he is a great finisher.
"We have a good quality squad and now the quantity, so that is why I think we will be stronger this year."
Goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny, meanwhile, knows Arsenal must also retain a sense of perspective heading into the new season.
He said: "Obviously we are enjoying the win, but what is important is that we are ready to start the season. We are looking strong, but we are not reading too much into it.
"Rather than talking about their lack of threat, I talk about our good defensive performance and the whole team shape as we limited them to a couple of chances."
Szczesny added: "Hopefully it (squad) will be the most successful one but looking at it on paper, yeah it probably is the strongest one we have had.
"Except for Thomas (Vermaelen), we have not lost any key players, even if someone did leave on a free, we have managed to replace them with good players.
"As I said, we are looking stronger and stronger and we are very happy with that."
Ospina was brought in to provide some healthy competition for the number one jersey following the departure of Lukasz Fabianski to Swansea.
Szczesny said: "I am going to enjoy that. At such a big club you expect very strong competition, so I am sure it will make us both better goalkeepers."
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