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Arsenal vs. Napoli: 5 Things We Learned

James McNicholasFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 1, 2017

Arsenal vs. Napoli: 5 Things We Learned

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    Arsenal began their Emirates Cup campaign with a 2-2 draw with Napoli.

    Former Chelsea boss Rafael Benitez made a swift return to English soil, and his new team were almost able to pull off an impressive victory. Napoli led 2-0 at half-time, only to be pegged back by two late Arsenal goals.

    Although the Emirates Cup is only a friendly tournament, Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal fans will still have attempted to draw some conclusions for the Gunners' performance.

    Go to the next slide to discover what we can conclude based on today's game.

Carl Jenkinson Is Not Ready to Replace Bacary Sagna

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    Carl Jenkinson has been a regular feature at right-back in preseason, with Bacary Sagna frequently asked to provide cover at centre-half.

    However, on this evidence, Jenkinson is far from ready to inherit Sagna's spot in the team.

    Jenkinson's calamitous defending allowed Lorenzo Insigne to give Napoli an early lead. First his poor positioning played Insigne onside, then his scuffed clearance allowed the Italian space to score.

    Based on this performance, Sagna's place in the Arsenal XI is safe for now. 

Serge Gnabry Will Get His Chance This Season

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    Serge Gnabry has started four of Arsenal's five preseason games. The message from Arsene Wenger is clear: Gnabry is now part of the senior squad.

    With John Cross of The Mirror reporting that Roma are on the verge of capturing Gervinho, Gnabry seems to be on standby to inherit the Ivorian winger's space in the squad. Gnabry also appears to have edged ahead of Ryo Miyaichi in the race for a first-team place.

    Arsenal fans will hope the young German is able to produce more consistently than Gervinho, who was more frustrating than thrilling to watch.

Arsenal Need a New Goalkeeper

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    Having sold Vito Mannone to Sunderland, Arsenal now have just two senior goalkeepers: Wojciech Szczesny and Lukasz Fabianski.

    On the evidence of this match, Fabianski is in no position to provide serious competition for Szczesny. The elder Pole was at his error-prone worst, and proved particularly culpable for Napoli's second goal.

    Arsenal need to recruit a new goalkeeper who can challenge Szczesny for the No. 1 shirt.

Lukas Podolski's Left Foot Isn't Perfect

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    Lukas Podolski is renowned for his hammer of a left foot. When presented with a decent opportunity to score, he rarely misses.

    Today, he surprised the Arsenal fans by badly mishitting a penalty, allowing Pepe Reina to turn his strike away. The cannon had misfired. The Emirates Stadium reacted with a stunned silence.

    Gunners supporters will be hoping that this is merely a temporary blip and Podolski is soon back to his lethal best.

Laurent Koscielny Will Be a Massive Player for Arsenal This Season

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