Ipswich Town 1 Arsenal 2 (Lewis 45, Balogun 54)
Arsenal U21s commenced their EFL Trophy campaign with an impressive 2-1 victory away to Ipswich Town tonight, with George Lewis and Folarin Balogun on the scoresheet.
It was the first official game that Arsenal had played at youth level for 189 days and there were some new faces in the squad, with Salah-Eddine and Lewis starting, while Tim Akinola was on the bench and made his debut in the second half.
Mark McGuinness, who scored in a friendly for the first-team versus MK Dons recently, captained the side at Portman Road.
Ipswich struck the post in the 17th minute through an effort from Aaron Drinan, and they eventually took the lead nine minutes later as Jon Nolan found the net following a cross from Alan Judge.
McGuinness later made an important intervention to clear the danger before Lewis equalised just before the break, with the recently signed winger following on from his strike in a friendly against Tottenham Hotspur.
Arsenal made an alteration at the break, with Miguel Azeez entering the fray in place of Jordan McEneff.
In the 54th minute Arsenal pulled level, with Ben Cottrell doing well to play in Balogun, who made no mistake in scoring.
Akinola and Cirjan were introduced as the game wore on, and goalkeeper Tom Smith had to make an important intervention late on, with Arsenal managing to secure all three points.
Arsenal: T. Smith; Alebiosu, Oyegoke, McGuinness, Bola; Cottrell, Olayinka, Salah-Eddine (Akinola 65); McEneff (Azeez 46), Balogun (Cirjan 73), Lewis. Subs not used: Hillson, Kirk, Ogungbo.
Elsewhere in the EFL Trophy, Trae Coyle scored as Gillingham beat Crawley Town 2-1 in Arsenal’s group. Zech Medley started at left-back and played 80 minutes.
Matt Smith made his first appearance for Swindon Town in a 3-2 defeat to West Bromwich Albion U21s.