One crunching challenge on Arsenal new boy Matteo Guendouzi resulted in a booking, but the tackle was more enthusiastic than malicious.
The 27-year-old has struggled for regular football in recent times, either because of injury or the form of other players - with the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette and Henrikh Mkhitaryan passing him in the pecking order.
If he does start, Manchester City must be licking their lips with Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling both looking to target the stand-in full-back. With Arsenal keen to play out from the back, City exerted pressure high up the pitch.
City look as hungry as ever despite their record-breaking success last season, when they won the title with a record 100 points and also lifted the League Cup.
Look at what Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech did in the first half, almost kicking the ball into his own net.
New Arsenal goalkeeper, Bernd Leno could get the nod over Petr Cech for Arsenal's opener against Manchester City. They need to take the game to City, if they do this - they will hurt this City team that looks to be flying at the moment. We wanted to be professional, to make it serious like last season and we did it. Benjamin Mendy advanced down the left and squared for Bernardo Silva who thumped the ball into the top corner.
The Spaniard will need time to make his mark on a moribund club and, while Arsenal couldn't be faulted for effort against City, there was precious little quality about their play.
As for Arsenal, it is a fresh start for a squad that finished in sixth last season, its worst finish since the 1994-95 season, two years before Arsene Wenger took over as manager.
Arsenal have the unenviable task of taking on the Champions of the Premier League on their opening match.
"Each player has this quality, this characteristic to help the team as a collective". "In the first half we needed less respect for City and then more aggressive pressing".
Emery also insisted on Friday that Welbeck is not one of the players who would be free to leave before the European transfer window shuts at the end of the month. The next chapter is underway, but Emery's work is only just beginning.