With temperatures approaching 80 degrees Fahrenheit on a sunny day in London, defending FA Cup champions Arsenal held off Premier League champions Chelsea, 1-0, in a surprisingly competitive and spirited Community Shield match in front of 85,437 at Wembley Stadium in London.
In the 24th minute, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain broke through with a stunning crossover in the penalty box on the right side, then unleashed a gorgeous left-footed strike that Thibaut Courtois could do nothing about. It was a deserving goal for the Gunners, who had done a solid job regaining momentum after the Blues applied plenty of first-half pressure.
Arsenal, who won the 2014 Community Shield, showed plenty of offense against Chelsea's impressive defensive line, to give Arsene Wenger a victory over bickering rival Jose Mourinho. The two managers didn't shake hands immediately after the match. With Mourinho shaking hands with every Arsenal player after the trophy presentation, he immediately turned his back on Wenger who trailed all the players as they made their way down the Wembley stairs.
Arsenal had several chances to score, including an excellent opportunity for Santi Cazorla in the final minutes that an off-the-line Courtois blocked in the chest. Substitute Olivier Giroud also had a good chance to score, but Arsenal would fail to provide the emphatic finish to the victory.
In a surreal moment in the 69th minute, goalkeeper Petr Cech, who left Chelsea after several seasons to join Arsenal, was distracted by Blues defender Branislav Ivanovic on an impending free kick from midfielder Oscar. Ivanovic would then retreat back to the wall, and Oscar's curving shot on goal was well saved by Cech to deny his former club the equalizer. Ivanovic would give his former teammate a pat on the back in respect and appreciation.
Chelsea had few other serious tests on Cech, as Mourinho seemed to sorely miss his star striker Diego Costa. The Spain international, who was sidelined with a hamstring injury, did not seem to be adequately replaced by Loic Remy and Radamel Falcao. Costa is considered a doubt for the Premier League season opener against Swansea.
The Arsenal victory marks the 14th time the famed club have won the Community Shield.