Star youngsters Omari Hutchinson and Marcelo Flores got on the scoresheet as Arsenal’s u21 pre-season fixtures got underway on Tuesday.

Marcelo Flores and Omari Hutchinson celebrate Arsenal's win over Chelsea u21s (Photo via Arsenal Academy on Twitter)
Marcelo Flores and Omari Hutchinson celebrate Arsenal’s win over Chelsea u21s (Photo via Arsenal Academy on Twitter)

With a few youth players going away on Arsenal’s pre-season tour, the remainder were preparing for action against Woking on Tuesday night.

There were a few surprises, notably Miguel Azeez, Omari Hutchinson, and Marcelo Flores sticking around with the u21s. Azeez appears to be closing in on a possible loan move, so perhaps that’s the reason he isn’t with the first team.

The upside was that the u21s could include the trio in their squad. Hutchinson and Azeez made the starting lineup, and the former ended up scoring Arsenal’s first goal.

Woking had taken the lead through a triallist midway through the half, but Hutchinson equalised with a powerful effort into the bottom-right corner from the edge of the box a few minutes before half-time.

Woking restored their lead after the break, before substitute Flores levelled the scores with another excellent finish from just inside the box.

The winger darted infield before using the defender to block the goalkeeper’s view as he curled an effort low into the corner.

Unfortunately, Arsenal then conceded a penalty to go behind for a third time, and they couldn’t make another comeback. The game ended 3-2.

For the first game of pre-season, that’s not a big deal, as the primary goal at this stage is just to build fitness. The competitive academy season won’t kick off for another month, and there are plenty more games to come.

For goalscorers Hutchinson and Flores, they’ll hope their performances this week will underline that they should get a chance in the first-team pre-season plans as the summer progresses.

Arsenal u21 lineup vs Woking

Graczyk, Alebiosu, Awe, Jeffcott, Sweet, Azeez, Sagoe Jr, Hutchinson, Cottrell, Ideho, Edwards

What’s next?

A behind-closed-doors friendly against FC Koln on Friday at 12:00 BST. For full information on Arsenal’s academy pre-season and how to get tickets, click here.

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