Emirates Cup 2014: Examining Notable Scores and Performances

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Emirates Cup 2014: Examining Notable Scores and Performances
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Valencia triumphed in the Emirates Cup 2014 as they beat Benfica 3-1 to claim the trophy on Sunday with Arsenal losing 1-0 to Monaco.

The Gunners missed out on winning their home pre-season tournament despite their opening 5-1 victory over Benfica on Saturday, denied a penalty late on against the Ligue 1 side. Per Bleacher Report UK:

However, Valencia were good value for their tournament win and will take heart ahead of the new La Liga season having finished a lowly eighth last term.

Here are the scores from the weekend's matches:

Emirates Cup 2014 Results
Date Fixture Result
Aug. 2 Valencia vs. Monaco 2-2
Aug. 2 Arsenal vs. Benfica 5-1
Aug. 3 Benfica vs. Valencia 1-3
Aug. 3 Arsenal vs. Monaco 0-1

The Telegraph

Let's have a look at some of the notable performances from the action in pre-season in North London.

 

Sanogo Bags Four

Michael Regan/Getty Images

The Gunners' opening 5-1 win was an all-round encouraging performance for Arsenal fans as well as something of a surprise as the often-underwhelming Yaya Sanogo scored four goals.

The 21-year-old French striker was much maligned last season as he failed to register a single goal, but his performance against the Portuguese side offered great encouragement in a superlative display, per football writer Iain Macintosh:

Furthermore, there were fine displays from a whole host of Arsenal players as boss Arsene Wenger laid plans for a title challenge in the new Premier League season, per French football journalist Julien Laurens:

However, as BT Sport's Jake Humphrey highlighted, the Benfica side at the Emirates was a far cry from the one that won the domestic treble in Portugal last season, although Arsenal still deserved credit:

Monaco presented something of a tougher challenge, and Arsenal looked far less convincing on Sunday, thus a perfect weekend it was not for the Gunners, but there were certainly encouraging signs. 

 

Falcao Returns

Michael Regan/Getty Images

The long-awaited return of Radamel Falcao for Monaco saw the Colombian bag the winner against Arsenal in his first start in six months.

A first-half header from a free-kick was enough for Monaco to claim a good win, and the Ligue 1 side looked impressive, causing Arsenal plenty of problems.

Falcao's goalscoring return will be very encouraging for Monaco ahead of the new season, although the 28-year-old may be on his way to Real Madrid, per Agence France-Presse's Tom Williams:  

The fact that Valencia were able to bag two goals in their draw with Monaco and then beat Benfica 3-1 showed they were worthy winners of the tournament. However, as BBC Sport's Gary Lineker points out, there is very little relevance to pre-season games:

A strong tournament then for Valencia and Monaco, a shocker for Benfica and a mixed weekend for hosts Arsenal.

But with four quality sides on show, the competition will have offered each of them valuable preparation time ahead of their respective league seasons. 

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