Arsenal’s first match of pre-season has ended in a defeat so let’s take a look at how they lined up against Hibs and the key moments from the game.

Hibs vs Arsenal dressing room via @Arsenal
Hibs vs Arsenal dressing room via @Arsenal

Arsenal: Okonkwo, Cedric, Clarke, Mari, Kolasinac, Nelson, Elneny, Maitland-Niles, Willian, Nketiah, Aubameyang

Subs: Hein, Rekik, Hutchinson, Pepe, Partey, Balogun, Smith Rowe, Lacazette, Bellerin, Henry-Francis

Hibs: Macey, McGinn, Hanlon, Porteous, Stevenson, Newell, Gogic, Boyle, Allan, Bradley, Nisbet

Subs: Dabrowski, Brydon, Campbell, Hallberg, Magennins, Wright, Mackay

Hibs vs Arsenal – Key events

After 21 minutes, Arsenal were trailing 1-0, thanks to a bad back-pass and a mistake from Okonkwo. Eddie Nketiah missed a glorious chance in the opening few minutes.

Stephen Bradley then hit the Arsenal post after 39 minutes.

HALF -TIME

Pepe, Partey, Lacazette, Balogun, Emile Smith Rowe, Omar Rekik and Karl Hein come on to replace Nketiah, Aubameyang, Willian, Nelson, Clarke, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Okonkwo

50′ Pepe freekick tipped onto the bar

62′ Hector Bellerin on, Cedric off

63′ Thomas Partey nearly breaks the frame of the goal with a freekick but the ball bounces away to safety

64′ Emile Smith Rowe goes close with some great feet but is denied by the Hibs keeper

69′ Hibs make it 2-0

73′ Arsenal penalty for a foul on Pepe

73′ Pepe’s penalty is saved

75′ Jack Henry-Francis (17) on to replace Elneny

80′ Omari Hutchinson replaces Kolasinac

82′ Arsenal score! Emile Smith Rowe turns in Hector Bellerin’s cross to the back post

https://twitter.com/MusaAyuak/status/1415018717210099720

89′ Omari Hutchinson wins a freekick on the edge of the Hibs box, but Pepe’s short free-kick is cleared.

FULL TIME Hibs 2 Arsenal 1

Hibs vs Arsenal dressing room via @Arsenal
Hibs vs Arsenal via @Arsenal

Pre-match Arsenal predicted lineup

Arsenal kick off pre-season with a friendly against Hibernian FC on Tuesday, let’s look at our predicted team for the clash.

fbl eng fa cup southampton arsenal
Arsenal’s Spanish manager Mikel Arteta looks on during the English FA Cup fourth round football match between Southampton and Arsenal at St Mary’s Stadium in Southampton, Hampshire, on January 23, 2021. (Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP)

After returning to training this week from their summer holiday, the Arsenal squad are preparing for their Edinburgh training camp and a couple of fixtures in Scotland against Hibs and Rangers.

For unexplained reasons likely related to quarantines and isolation periods, not every available player has returned to training with Arsenal just yet.

It’s possible they’ll feature in the Hibs friendly anyway, but for now, we’re going to assume the Arsenal side will largely be made up of the players who have been in training already over the last week. Here’s our predicted Arsenal lineup for that match.

Goalkeeper

Arsenal's Icelandic goalkeeper Runar Alex Runarsson comes on after Arsenal's German goalkeeper Bernd Leno leaves the field on being red carded during the English Premier League football match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal at the Molineux stadium in Wolverhampton, central England on February 2, 2021. (Photo by Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP)
Arsenal’s Icelandic goalkeeper Runar Alex Runarsson comes on during the English Premier League football match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal on February 2, 2021. (Photo by Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP)

Bernd Leno is on holiday and Mat Ryan has left, so Runar Alex Runarsson is the most senior goalkeeper and the most likely to start this match.

Arthur Okonkwo has a fresh new contract and has been promoted to the first team, so he’ll likely get some minutes too. So far there’s been no sign of Dejan Iliev in training photos, nor Karl Hein, but they’re both possibilities for a squad spot.

Defence

Pablo Mari in training with Arsenal (Photo via Chris Wheatley on Twitter)
Pablo Mari in training with Arsenal (Photo via Chris Wheatley on Twitter)

The only senior defenders we’ve seen in training so far are Sead Kolasinac, Pablo Mari, Calum Chambers, and Cedric Soares, so that’s probably the back four that will start against Hibs.

Left-back Nuno Tavares has joined in the last couple of days, so he’ll likely get his debut from the bench. Centre-backs Harry Clarke and Omar Rekik look to be stepping up from the u23s for a pre-season chance as well.

There’s no sign of Rob Holding yet, but he should be involved soon. William Saliba is closing in on a loan move, and Gabriel Magalhaes is injured.

Midfield

Emile Smith Rowe in action during the Premier League match at Selhurst Park, London. Picture date: Wednesday May 19, 2021. Copyright: Frank Augstein
Emile Smith Rowe in action during the Premier League match at Selhurst Park, London. Picture date: Wednesday, May 19, 2021. Copyright: Frank Augstein

Again, our team prediction will be based on the midfielders we’ve actually seen in training so far, so Emile Smith Rowe, Thomas Partey, and Ainsley Maitland-Niles.

Granit Xhaka is away on holiday, as is Lucas Torreira. Matteo Guendouzi has left the club, and there’s no sign of Joe Willock or Mohamed Elneny just yet. Ideally, those two, Miguel Azeez and a few other youngsters will join the squad.

Forwards

Reiss Nelson with the Arsenal u23s at Meadow Park (Photo via Arsenal Academy on Twitter)
Reiss Nelson with the Arsenal u23s at Meadow Park (Photo via Arsenal Academy on Twitter)

With Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli on international duty, this is another area where numbers are limited. There’s also no sign of Willian, Alexandre Lacazette, or Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, though you’d expect them all in training very soon.

For the time being, that leaves Reiss Nelson and Nicolas Pepe to start on the wings, with either Eddie Nketiah or Folarin Balogun up front. The backup wing spots will have to be filled by u23s, with Kido Taylor-Hart close to a new deal.

Nketiah and Balogun will likely both get chances in the coming weeks, but there’s an element of keeping Nketiah in the shop window that has me predicting he’ll start.

Predicted Lineup vs Hibs

Arsenal Predicted Lineup vs Hibs created using Chosen11.com
Arsenal Predicted Lineup vs Hibs created using Chosen11.com