Arsenal opening friendly match against Hibernian this Tuesday 13th July didn’t quite go to plan. Mikel Arteta’s men lost 2-1, with one of their goals conceded coming from a horrendous error from goalkeeper Okwonko.
He hesitated over clearing the ball, eventually missing it and leaving the Hibernian player with an easy tap in.
Arsenal lost their first friendly pre-season match against Hibernian, a match in which Arteta’s men went into as clear favourites. Things got off to the worst start possible after a calamitous error from goalkeeper Arthur Okwonko, who his manager then substituted at half-time.
It was the 21st minute when a pass over the top threatened Arsenal’s back line, from which Boyle evenutally opened the scoring for the home side. The ‘keeper hesitated after receiving a back pass, unsure whether to clear or stay back to defend the chance one-on-one. In the end he did neither, swiping clean air and leaving the player to finish into an empty net.
This 1-0 was only the beginning of a disastrous result for the Gunners, who ended up losing 2-1. Mackay doubled his side’s advantage, Pepe saw his 73rd-minute penalty saved before Smith-Rowe eventually pulled one back in the 82th minute. The scoreline didn’t change beyond this point, however, as Arsenal were unable to complete the comeback.
This first step of the 2021/22 campaign is far from flattering for Arsenal, who will need to improve their results and performances before the upcoming matches. It is worth noting that this defeat came with many first-team players on the pitch. Aubameyang, Maitiland-Niles, Willian, Nketiah, Lacazette and Smith-Rowe, among others, all featured for Arteta