Welcome to Sports Mole
's live text coverage of the International Champions Cup fixture between Real Madrid
from the FedEx Field. Madrid opened their preparations for the new season with a 3-1 defeat to Bayern Munich on Saturday, but Arsenal have overcome Colorado Rapids, Bayern and Fiorentina in their three friendlies this summer. Stay tuned for what should be a cracking game!
REAL MADRID: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Nacho, Mendy; Vazquez, Modric, Kroos, Hazard; Jovic, Benzema
ARSENAL: Martinez, Chambers, Sokratis, Kolasinac; Mkhitaryan, Willock, Xhaka, Ozil, Maitland-Niles; Aubameyang, Lacazette
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has made five changes to the team that started against Bayern last time out, with Keylor Navas, Nacho, Ferland Mendy, Lucas Vazquez and Luka Jovic coming into the side. It looks to be a 4-4-2 formation for Los Blancos, with Eden Hazard again featuring on the left. Gareth Bale
has been listed on the bench tonight, but it remains to be seen if he is involved amid the speculation surrounding his future.
As for Arsenal, there is a familiar look to the XI with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette returning in the final third of the field. Granit Xhaka, Mesut Ozil and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are also amongst those to come in as head coach Unai Emery shuffles his pack following the 3-0 win over Fiorentina. Kickoff is now just minutes away!
The last time that these two teams locked horns was in the 2005-06 Champions League, with Arsenal recording a 1-0 aggregate victory to advance to the quarter-finals of the competition. Indeed, a Thierry Henry strike at the Bernabeu proved to be enough for the Gunners to make the last eight after a goalless draw in the second leg at Highbury.
There is no question that it is performances and fitness rather than results that matter most at this stage of pre-season, but both managers will be looking for the win tonight. The fans have turned up in their numbers and both sets of players are just about to walk onto the field here.
As mentioned, Arsenal have enjoyed a strong start to their pre-season preparations, opening with a 3-0 victory against Colorado Rapids before back-to-back wins over Bayern and Fiorentina. Eddie Nketiah has made the strongest impression on tour, netting against Bayern before striking a double in the 3-0 success over Fiorentina. The young Englishman starts on the bench tonight, though.
KICKOFF: Madrid kick things off at the FedEx Field...
SAVE! ... Arsenal goalkeeper Martinez has to make a really smart save down to his left to keep out a low strike from Karim Benzema, who had worked some space before shooting.
Half-chance for Madrid this time as Jovic breaks into the Arsenal box, but Sokratis is across to make an excellent block. It has been a bright start from the Spanish side.
Better from Arsenal in the last couple of minutes as they start to settle. Aubameyang, who is playing down the right, just attempted to charge clear of Mendy, but the left-back was on hand to make a smart challenge. There is an open feel to the game here.
Arsenal have a free kick in a very dangerous area as Nacho fouls Kolasinac, who was just about to run into the Madrid box. Perhaps should be a red card?!
YELLOW CARD! Nacho (Madrid) is booked for the rash tackle. Dangerous area for a free kick...
SAVE! ... smart save from Navas to keep out the resulting free kick from Ozil.
SAVE! Another save from Navas to keep out an attempt from Willock as Arsenal continue to win the ball high up the field. Plenty happening in the early stages of this game.
PENALTY! Arsenal have a penalty following a Nacho handball inside the box!
PENALTY! Nacho appears to be deliberately prevent a Lacazette effort finding the back of the net, but the centre-back is still on the field. Very fortunate! It is all happening!
RED CARD! Nacho (Madrid). Now the red card does come out! Nacho is sent off!
GOAL! REAL MADRID 0-1 ARSENAL (LACAZETTE, PEN)
GOAL! Lacazette's penalty hits both posts before dropping into the back of the net. Some start to this pre-season friendly and Madrid will have to play on with 10 men here.
CLOSE! Mkhitaryan fires one over the crossbar as Arsenal continue to force the issue in the early stages. There has hardly been time to take a breath in the first 12 minutes here.
SAVE! Another smart save from Navas to keep out a strike from Mkhitaryan. I am not entirely sure that Madrid's defence is doing, but there is so much space for the Gunners.
REAL MADRID SUB! Varane replaces Jovic in Madrid's first change.
The alteration is tough on Jovic, but a change needed to be made as Arsenal were having so much joy in the final third of the field. The red card is bad for the neutral as it has changed the course of the match, but the referee did not have much of a choice.
Better from Madrid in the last couple of minutes, but the Spanish club's latest move ends with Hazard chipping a cross into the arms of the waiting Arsenal goalkeeper.
It will be very interesting to see how Emery plays his match in terms of changes - it would be a surprise to see wholesale substitutions at the break. Madrid, thought, are expected to ring the changes at the interval for the second successive match.
It is a 4-4-1 formation for Madrid now and Benzema is very isolated in the final third of the field. Arsenal, on the other hand, are full of movement all over the park here.
Mendy shows his electric pace by driving into the Arsenal box, but his cross is straight into the arms of Martinez. Still 1-0 to the Gunners with 24 minutes on the clock here.
GOAL! REAL MADRID 0-2 ARSENAL (AUBAMEYANG)
GOAL! Arsenal double their lead in the 24th minute as Lacazette frees Aubameyang and the striker rounds Navas before finding the back of the net. Ramos did his best to stop the ball on the line, but it simply clipped off the centre-back's boot into the goal.
YELLOW CARD! Carvajal (Madrid) is booked for a tug on Ozil's shirt.
Without Casemiro, Madrid are incredibly light in the middle of the park. Indeed, the fact that Modric and Kroos are playing as a midfield two is slightly concerning as neither are too interested in helping out their back four. Little over 15 minutes of the first period remaining.
Ozil releases Jenkinson in a wide area and the defender delivers low towards the middle of the Madrid box, but Navas is on hand to make the claim. Madrid's defence are all over the place.
SHOT! Modric misses the target with a speculative effort from distance.
Kroos manages to release Benzema inside the Arsenal box, but the striker's cross is blocked and the Gunners can break once again. End-to-end football at the moment here.
Hazard has struggled to get into the match for Madrid, with the Belgium international seeing little of the ball in the final third of the field. Ozil, on the other hand, has been really bright for the Gunners, who lead 2-0 heading into the latter stages of the first half.
Madrid are seeing more of the ball at the moment, but Martinez has not really been tested in the Arsenal goal since that early effort from Benzema. Kroos has just delivered a free kick into the Arsenal box, but it was easily defended by Swiss midfielder Xhaka.
SHOT! Lacazette fires over the Madrid crossbar from inside the box. Carvajal was caught on that occasion and it has been a tough half for the Madrid defence here.
YELLOW CARD! Sokraris (Arsenal) is booked for a foul on Kroos.
RED CARD! Sokratis (Arsenal). Oh my word, now Sokratis is sent off for a second yellow! It was a poor challenge on Modric and the centre-back has been sent from the field.
Well, nothing friendly about this match then. Sometimes pre-season matches can be full, but this has been a seriously entertaining game. More of the same please.
Kroos has a shot deflected behind for a corner as Madrid look to register late in the first period. Arsenal have gone from being very comfortable to quite panicky and it will be very interesting to see what Emery does at the break in terms of changes. We will soon find out!
Carvajal looks to find Benzema with a volleyed cross inside the Arsenal box, but Martinez is on hand to make the claim. Strong pressure from Madrid at the moment.
Just the one minute of additional time at the end of the first period here.
CHANCE! Huge chance for Madrid to register as Kroos finds the head of Benzema inside the Arsenal box, but the France international somehow nods wide of the post!
HALF TIME: REAL MADRID 0-2 ARSENAL
So there we have it - the referee brings the first period to a close with Arsenal leading Madrid 2-0 courtesy of goals from Lacazette and Aubameyang in a crazy first period.
Both teams picked up red cards in the opening 45 minutes, with Nacho picking up a second yellow for a handball on the line, while Sokratis brought Modric to the ground with a rash challenge to pick up his second booking in the space of two minutes.
Arsenal had 58% possession in the first period, while they managed six shots on target from nine attempts - two of which found the back of the net.
Madrid, meanwhile, only hit the target with one of their five attempts in the first period. It has been a difficult half for Hazard, with the Belgium international seeing little of the ball.
Maitland-Niles, Martinelli, Monreal, Mustafi, Nelson and Nketiah are amongst those who will be hoping to feature for Arsenal in the second 45 minutes.
Madrid have already made one change tonight with Varane replacing Jovic, but the likes of Isco, Asensio, Mariano, Kubo, Vinicius and Rodrygo could be used in the second period. It will also be very interesting to see whether a certain Gareth Bale features tonight.
Next up for Madrid is a clash against bitter rivals Atletico Madrid in New Jersey on Saturday, while Arsenal will take on Lyon in the Emirates Cup on Sunday.
KICKOFF: Arsenal resume the action in Maryland...
... wholesale changes for Madrid - I shall try and confirm as soon as possible.
ARSENAL SUB! Monreal has replaced Willock for the Gunners.
REAL MADRID SECOND-HALF XI: Courtois; Odriozola, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Isco, Kroos, Modric, Asensio; Bale
So the big news for Madrid is that Bale has entered the field as a centre-forward. It appeared that the Welshman had played his last game for the club, but he features in the second half of this clash with Asensio also amongst those to enter at the break.
Not an awful lot to report in terms of chances in the early stages of the second period, while Xhaka is currently down receiving some treatment for Arsenal following a late tackle.
OFF THE POST! Madrid come close to halving the deficit as Asensio strikes a wonderful effort from outside the box, but his effort smashes against the post. Deserved better!
Madrid are very much on the front foot at the moment as they look for a route back into the match. Arsenal have not really threatened a third since the half-time break here.
Just the one change for Arsenal thus far tonight with Monreal replacing Willock at the interval. Emery will be considering alterations at this stage of the contest and it will be interesting to see whether the Spaniard makes a couple here and there, or changes his whole side.
GOAL! REAL MADRID 1-2 ARSENAL (BALE)
GOAL! It just had to be him didn't it! Bale is on the scoresheet for Madrid as the Welshman taps home from close range following a scramble inside the box. There's the story!
All Madrid at the moment with Arsenal struggling to get hold of the ball.
GOAL! REAL MADRID 2-2 ARSENAL (ASENSIO)
GOAL! All square in Maryland as Asensio plays a one-two with Marcelo before finding the back of the net with a powerful finish. Arsenal are all over the place at the moment.
Madrid are preparing to make three more changes as we head into the final 30 minutes of normal time. It is still all one-way traffic with Arsenal struggling to keep the ball.
There is some real concern over Asensio here with the Spaniard hitting the deck and staying there - looks to be a knee problem. The stretcher has been called here.
Asensio is indeed stretchered off the field and he looks distraught.
REAL MADRID SUBS! Ramos, Modric, Kroos and Asensio are replaced by Vinicius, De La Fuente, Fidalgo and Seoane. The Vinicius change was not actually planned.
SAVE! Smart save from Martinez to keep out a clever effort from Bale.
Super goalkeeping from Courtois to prevent Aubameyang from advancing any further after the Gunners had put together a smart move - much better from Arsenal, who have not really been in the game since the half-time break. Little over 20 minutes of normal time remaining.
Bale has been very lively since entering the field and it would not be a surprise to see the Wales international come up with the winner here. There will no extra-time if this game does indeed finish level - it will go straight to penalties to see who triumphs.
SAVE! Comfortable for Courtois to keep out a header from Monreal.
ARSENAL SUBS! Lacazette, Ozil and Aubameyang are replaced by Nketiah, Saka and Burton.
OFF THE LINE! Excellent defending from Bale to clear an attempt from Chambers off the line. Madrid then manage to scramble clear as the pressure stays on the Spanish giants.
Vinicius goes down inside the Arsenal box and wants a penalty, but the referee is not interested. Little over 10 minutes of normal time remaining in this ICC affair.
CLOSE! Bale's effort from a dangerous position just misses the Arsenal post. The Wales international has made a huge impact since entering at the interval.
Better from Arsenal in the last few minutes with the Gunners committing more players in the final third of the field - is there going to be a late winner in this pre-season clash?
Just a reminder that there will be a penalty shootout unless there is a goal in the next five minutes or so. Madrid have just seen their latest attack down the left come to an end.
Nelson breaks into a wide position before looking to deliver towards Sako, but De La Fuente is on the cover to make the clearance. Still 2-2 with 86 minutes on the clock.
The match has gone a touch scrappy in the last few minutes with the 90th minute moving ever closer. It does appear that this game will be heading for a shootout.
CHANCE! Huge chance for Arsenal to win it as Nketiah breaks into a one-on-one situation with Courtois, but the youngster fires his effort straight at the Madrid goalkeeper.
Still 2-2 as we head into the 90th minute - penalties are on the horizon.
We are into the first of four minutes of additional time here.
Not an awful lot to report in stoppage time with both teams seemingly accepting that this game will be decided by a penalty shootout. It has been a brilliant contest.
END OF 90 MINUTES: REAL MADRID 2-2 ARSENAL
So there we have it - the two teams cannot be separated during normal time and therefore a penalty shootout is required. Arsenal led 2-0 at the break through Lacazette and Aubameyang before Bale and Asensio responded in the second half of action.
It seems a long time since Lacazette sent Arsenal ahead from the spot...
Fairly quick turnaround here as both sets of players are almost ready to get the shootout underway - can Arsenal's youngsters hold their nerve to triumph here?
GOAL! Nelson scores for Arsenal to send the Gunners ahead.
SAVE! Bale sees his penalty saved by Martinez!
SAVE! Xhaka's penalty is saved by Courtois!
GOAL! Isco beats Martinez to put Madrid on the board in this shootout.
GOAL! Saka converts from the spot to send Arsenal 2-1 ahead on penalties.
GOAL! Varane makes no mistake with his penalty to level the scores once again.
OFF THE POST! Monreal sees his penalty hit the post - big moment!
GOAL! Vinicius scores from the spot to make it advantage Madrid.
SHOT! Burton misses from the spot - firing over - as Arsenal lose on penalties!
FULL TIME: REAL MADRID 2-2 ARSENAL (REAL MADRID WIN 3-2 ON PENALTIES)
So there we have it - Madrid triumph on penalties at the end of a very entertaining International Champions Cup fixture. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for our live minute-by-minute updates once again. Hopefully see you again soon!
That is just about it from me here, but I shall leave you with the match report
. Until next time!