Manchester City won the Community Shield on penalties after edging Liverpool in an entertaining game in front of a raucous Wembley.
Georginio Wijnaldum’s penalty was saved by City goalkeeper Claudio Bravo, before Gabriel Jesus scored the winning kick.
The meeting between two outstanding sides did not disappoint.
City’s Raheem Sterling finally scored his first goal against his old club when he turned home David Silva’s flick-on from close range.
The woodwork was hit three times in quick succession in the second half, as Sterling struck the post in a one on one, Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk shot against the underside of the bar and team-mate Mohamed Salah hit a post.
The Reds drew level when Joel Matip headed home Van Dijk’s cross.
At that stage, Liverpool looked the most likely team to win, with Salah having at least three chances – most remarkably when his header was sensationally cleared off the line by a Kyle Walker bicycle kick.
And so the game went straight to penalties, with City scoring all of theirs.
A game whose competitive status is often questioned – and might end up meaning little as the season goes on – was nonetheless an entertaining start to the top-level season. A curtain-raiser if you will.
Elsewhere, An excellent late goal from Luis Suarez gave Barcelona a 2-1 friendly win over Arsenal at a packed Nou Camp.
In their final pre-season game, Arsenal named a fairly strong starting XI and led at half-time through Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s fine individual strike.
But Barca were dominant after the break and levelled through Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ calamitous own goal.
Former Liverpool man Suarez then came off the bench to score a clinical late volley for the La Liga champions.
Arsenal – without record signing Nicolas Pepe – counter-attacked well in the first half and Aubameyang put them ahead with a brilliant turn and finish from 16 yards, shrugging off Jordi Alba to lash into the top corner.
That shocked the home crowd, and after half-time Barcelona were completely on top. Bernd Leno saved well from Ousmane Dembele twice before Maitland-Niles passed beyond him without looking for an own goal.
Seventeen-year-old Bukayo Saka looked lively for the Gunners as a late sub but Suarez prevented a penalty shootout when he ran onto Sergi Roberto’s lofted through ball to drive a volley past Leno.
Arsenal face Newcastle in their Premier League opener next Sunday.