Arsenal's £16m deadline day signing Danny Welbeck made his debut for the club during their exciting 2-2 draw with Manchester City on Saturday.
After capping his move to North London by scoring a brace for England against Switzerland last Monday, the 23-year-old would have been desperate to impress on his return to Premier League action with the Gunners.
Starring in his favoured role as a central striker, with Mesut Ozil deployed to his left and Sanchez on the right, Welbeck offered a focal point in attack that Arsenal were able to exploit. Their new-found level of fluidity made for a truly impressive opening spell, during which they really should have stamped their authority on proceedings.
|Match||Total Shots||Shots on Target||Shot Accuracy (%)||Conversion (%)||Mins|
|Danny Welbeck||Arsenal vs Man City||5||2||40.00||0.00||88|
Welbeck showed early glimpses of class and came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock in the 11th minute. David Silva's back pass provided the perfect opportunity for the £16 million man to open his Gunners' account, but after taking his time to measure a chipped finish over Joe Hart, he found himself denied by the post.
Considering he fashioned five attempts at goal in this fixture, one would suggest he should have made his mark on the final score-line. He was denied on two occasions by the efforts of Hart and his remaining three strikes were simply not up to scratch.
Ultimately, it was this ruthlessness that saw him axed from Louis Van Gaal's new-look Manchester United side. The Dutchman criticized the striker for his lack of goals at Old Trafford, and this is certainly an aspect of his game that his new head coach will be hoping to improve.
The England international's work-rate was truly phenomenal, and while he didn't have the most fruitful day in front of goal, the Emirates faithful will muster little criticism in respect to his overall contribution. He may not have found the back of the net, but his energy and movement certainly helped the club as they earned a point versus the defending Premier League champions.
|Won Tackle||Aerial Won||Interception||Dispossessed|
Welbeck's efforts off the ball saw him attempt three tackles, from which he retrieved possession on one occasion. He was also able to block three passes in the opposition half, whilst collecting the ball from an interception in his own defensive third. It was his challenge that eventually led to Wilshere's equalising goal.
He posed continuous problems for City's centre-back pairing of Vincent Kompany and Martin Demichelis, harassing the opposition duo from the off. His early confidence proved clear to see and he had no qualms squaring up to either player as he looked to impress his new fans. He challenged for nine headers in total, emerging victorious from 44% of his efforts.
|Total Att Assist||Total Final Third Passes||Total Pass||Pass Completion (%)||Touches|
In terms of creativity he offered fairly little, yet he completed a respectable 83% of his passes. Considering his only four inaccurate passes were attempts to play in a team-mate on the edge of the 18-yard-box, his overall ability to hold-up play and maintain possession cannot be questioned.
Cause for optimism
Despite his failure to score, Welbeck's debut performance certainly deserves a considerable amount of praise. Facing the defending league champions, he couldn't have experienced a tougher start to live at the Emirates, yet he was able to display signs of things to come.
He was substituted by Arsene Wenger after 88 minutes to a standing ovation from the Gunners faithful; the recognition he would have be desperate for pre-match.