Arsenal and Chelsea both began their pre season matches today, staying close to home, unlike Manchester United.

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Chelsea beat Crystal Palace 1-0, with Michael Essien, returning after an injury that has kept him off the pitch for seven months, scoring the only goal at Selhurst Park. Chelsea played without all their World Cup players, still resting, with Petr Cech, Essien and Mikel the only members of the usual starting lineup. Chelsea’s only acquisiton this summer, Israeli Yossi Benayoun, didn’t play due to injury.

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Arsenal played against Barnet at the Underhill stadium, winning comfortably 4-0. Fabregas wasn’t there, but Arshavin was, opening the scoring. Jay Simpson scored two, making it 3-0 by the end of the first half, and Sami Nasri added the fourth after a terrible mistake by Barnet’s Daniel Leach. Arsenal newcomers Marouane Chamakh and Laurent Koscienly made their gunners debuts.