Asked about these comments in his post-match press conference, Arteta said: ‘At the end of the day, soccer belongs to the players.

'We’re playing in front of 70,000 people and as soon as the game starts they’ll rebel against the coaches as soon as the game starts and they’ll do what they want. As soon as there’s the first foul of the game they’ll start getting intense and they’ll start playing.

‘It got really competitive for a friendly match. It got that way after the first tackle, the first goal. Playing in front of 70,000 people helps create an atmosphere.

‘They are elite players and they all want to win. But at the end, I think it got a bit too much for a friendly, but I think the show that we put in for all the people that came to watch was really good.

‘That’s how we want to play. We want to smother a rival, we’ll play the game we can, but we’ll play the game in any field we go to. We’ll play the same way in any game we play.’

Having concluded their pre-season tour of the USA, this match against Barcelona marked Arsenal's last game, with only one more friendly left to play against Monaco at the Emirates.

The Gunners' official season kicks off on 6th August, commencing with the Community Shield match against Manchester City. Subsequently, six days later, they will have their first league fixture at home, facing Nottingham Forest.