There has been a feeling of late that Arsenal’s current crop of loanees is their most exciting group for quite some time, and that theory was supported yesterday as several of the young Gunners on temporary transfer started the season in style.
Chuba Akpom did what he failed to do during his three previous loan spells as he scored his first professional goal. The striker started for Hull City and scored from close range in a 2-0 victory over Huddersfield Town.
The striker played 83 minutes, whilst Isaac Hayden played the whole game. The midfielder picked up a yellow card but was generally an assured presence.
The Arsenal youngsters linked up on one occasion, with Hayden playing a neat pass into the path of Akpom, but the latter was unable to find the net.
Elsewhere in the Championship, Jon Toral marked his debut for Birmingham City with a goal. The Spaniard, who spent last season on loan at Brentford, scored a header in a 2-1 victory over Reading. Toral played 71 minutes and was impressive throughout his time on the field.
Dan Crowley, meanwhile, made an excellent start to his professional career as he set up a goal after just four minutes of Barnsley’s 3-1 loss to Chesterfield in League One. Crowley, who later sent a shot wide himself, was involved in the build-up to Conor Wilkinson’s goal. Crowley played 57 minutes before being substituted.
Yaya Sanogo was introduced as a second-half substitute as Ajax beat AZ 3-0. The striker played 27 minutes.
Wojciech Szczesny played the whole game and made some impressive saves as Roma beat Valencia 3-1 in a friendly.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles made his competitive debut for Ipswich Town as they drew 2-2 with Brentford. The Hale End product played 82 minutes and came close to scoring on a couple of occasions.
Carl Jenkinson was ineligible for West Ham United’s victory over Arsenal today.
Serge Gnabry‘s West Bromwich Albion side take on Manchester City tomorrow night.