Arsenal suffered a 2-1 defeat to Olympique Lyonnais in the Emirates Cup on Sunday afternoon.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates scoring Arsenal’s first goal against Olympique Lyonnais in pre-season (Photo via Twitter / Arsenal)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates scoring Arsenal’s first goal against Olympique Lyonnais in pre-season (Photo via Twitter / Arsenal)

Arsenal had the best of the first half, with Aubameyang opening the scoring after a fizzed cross from Mkhitaryan. Lyon came back into the game in the second though, equalising through Moussa Dembele.

Arsenal had missed a few great chances and had one goal ruled out for offside, and they were punished as Dembele scored again to make it 2-1.

Despite Aubameyang hitting the post and Martinelli having a goal ruled out for offside late on, the Gunners couldn’t find an equaliser of their own.

Though the result didn’t go their way, Arsenal can take a lot of positives into their first Premier League match of the season. You can use https://www.betway.co.za/soccer-betting to put money on the Gunners’ opening fixture against Newcastle, by which point they should’ve added a new signing or two as well.

Let’s have a look at our player ratings for the match.

Goalkeeper

Bernd Leno 7.5 – He didn’t have much to do in the first half, but he was immediately brought into the action in the second, denying Depay with a fingertips save. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much he could do about Dembele’s goals.

Defence

  • Ainsley Maitland-Niles 6 – Returning from injury, Maitland-Niles made a quick start and almost set Mkhitaryan up for the opening goal with a nice cross into the box. He appeared to go off injured again, which is worrying.
  • Calum Chambers 7 – Chambers covered Lyon’s attempts to counter really nicely in the first half. Got a little lucky with a handball call in the box, though his arms were tucked into his body.
  • Sokratis Papastathopoulos 6 – Solid enough performance, no real major incidents of note, which was a good thing after the Madrid red card.
  • Nacho Monreal 6 – The Lyon players got in behind Monreal a bit too often, but when he was in the right position he made a few good tackles and interceptions.

Midfield

  • Matteo Guendouzi 6 – Making his first appearance in pre-season after the u21 European Championship this summer, Guendouzi didn’t need long to settle in, spraying his usual eye-catching long passes around the field. He did struggle a little in the physical duels though, and he was withdrawn at half-time.
  • Granit Xhaka 6 – Xhaka also had no trouble playing passes long and short to control the match from deep in midfield.
  • Joe Willock 8 – Involved in a few nice moves early on and pressing with his usual intensity, he just couldn’t quite find the net after picking up good positions in the box. He had to move back into the deeper midfield partnership in the second half, but still got forward when possible and made a great chance for Nketiah.

Forwards

  • Henrikh Mkhitaryan 6 – Mkhitaryan saw a good volley well saved in the early stages, but he ended up being involved in the opening goal anyway, firing a cross into Aubameyang to finish. After that he didn’t have too many positive moments.
  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang 8 – Aubameyang had to do a lot with Mkhitaryan’s cross to turn the opening goal home, but he did so expertly. He then hit the post in the second half with another impressive chipped effort. The Gabonese striker is in great form, and he’d be an obvious candidate for a first goalscorer bet with Betway next game.
  • Alexandre Lacazette N/A – After just a few minutes Lacazette seemed to be struggling with an ankle problem, getting it taped up on the sidelines. After less than 15 minutes he was withdrawn for Reiss Nelson.

Substitutes

  • Reiss Nelson 8 – Started brightly, immediately getting at the Lyon defence with his pace and trickery. He created a number of great chances and almost scored one of his own early in the second half.
  • Eddie Nketiah 6 – Soon after coming on Nketiah found himself a couple of great positions but narrowly missed on both occasions. He created a few more opportunities for himself through the second half and will be disappointed he didn’t win more free-kicks from referee Jon Moss.
  • Dani Ceballos 7 – Ceballos looked lively, had a few nice moments in possession and won a great free-kick on the edge of the box, which he probably should have taken himself.
  • Shkodran Mustafi 5.5 – It wasn’t a great look when Lyon beat Arsenal’s offside trap very shortly after Mustafi came on. He did make a great sliding tackle to prevent a Lyon attempt at a third goal late on though.
  • Gabriel Martinelli 6 – Martinelli had a goal ruled out for offside and created a decent chance, but he didn’t have too much time on the ball in his 20 minutes on the pitch.
  • Carl Jenkinson 6 – Jenkinson was even less involved after coming on, mostly just passing it back to the player who gave it to him.
  • Tyreece John-Jules 6 – John-Jules had a couple of nice touches and had one decent chance but saw a fairly tame weak-foot shot easily saved.
  • Zech Medley N/A – Medley and Burton only came on for a couple of minutes and played a few passes each.
  • Robbie Burton N/A – As above.
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