Loan report – Nwakali hits crossbar; Asano and Nelson feature


Reiss Nelson was brought on in the 59th minute as Hoffenheim drew 2-2 with Wolfsburg.

Krystian Bielik played the full game and was booked as Charlton Athletic lost 2-1 to Blackpool.

Takuma Asano started and played 79 minutes as Hannover drew 1-1 with Mainz.

Matt Macey played the whole game as Plymouth Argyle drew 3-3 with Bradford City.

Kelechi Nwakali came on in the 81st minute and hit the crossbar with a free-kick as Porto B beat Academica 3-0.

David Ospina was an unused substitute as Napoli beat Frosinone 4-0.

Calum Chambers wasn’t involved as Fulham lost 4-1 to Manchester United.



Report – John-Jules strikes but Arsenal U23s are thrashed by Liverpool

Premier League 2

Liverpool 4 (Markovic 5, Camacho 44, Millar 74, 76) Arsenal 1 (John-Jules 10)


Arsenal U23s saw their winless run extend to five matches as they were beaten 4-1 away by Liverpool today despite Tyreece John-Jules’ strike.

The young Gunners were missing three defenders through suspension, with Jordi Osei-Tutu, Tolaji Bola and Daniel Ballard all suspended, but Ben Sheaf returned from injury to start.




John Jules

Subs: Olowu (for Sheaf, 46), Thompson (for Bramall, 77), Balogun (for Coyle, 85). Not used: Okonkwo, Zelalem. 

Arsenal won emphatically when these sides met earlier in the campaign, but it quickly became apparent that they would face a considerable challenge on this occasion, with Lazar Markovic opening the scoring for Liverpool in the fifth minute.

John-Jules levelled for Arsenal just five minutes later, but Rafael Camacho struck just before half-time to restore Liverpool’s lead.

In the second half substitute Liam Millar scored two quickfire goals to secure victory for Liverpool and condemn Arsenal to their third league defeat in succession.


Arsenal U23s hit by three defensive suspensions ahead of Liverpool clash

Arsenal U23s will be deprived of the services of three defenders due to suspension when they face Liverpool away on Saturday afternoon.

Freddie Ljungberg’s side, who have lost their last two league games and were knocked out of the Checkatrade Trophy this week, will be without Tolaji Bola, Jordi Osei-Tutu and Danny Ballard.

Bola is suspended after accumulating five yellow cards, while Osei-Tutu and Ballard are commencing three-match bans having been sent off in the defeat against Derby County.

It also seems unlikely that Laurent Koscielny, who has featured in the last two second-string matches, will be involved against Liverpool as he could be on the bench for the first-team against Huddersfield Town.

Meanwhile, Julio Pleguezuelo faces a battle to be fit having missed the last couple of matches through injury and Ben Sheaf is still out.

With his options at the back somewhat limited, Ljungberg may have to revert to playing a four-man defence, which could be comprised of Joseph Olowu, Zech Medley, Tobi Omole and Cohen Bramall.

If Ljungberg is insistent upon playing a back three then he could draft in U18 centre-backs Mark McGuinness and Bayli Spencer-Adams.

Dominic Thompson is an alternative choice at left-back, while Vontae Daley-Campbell, who has been the regular right-back for the U18s this season, could also be promoted if required.

With regards to attacking options, Emile Smith Rowe and Eddie Nketiah may be needed for the first-team, while midfielder Joe Willock could also train with the senior squad.

Report – Koscielny suffers knock as Arsenal U21s are knocked out of Checkatrade Trophy by Portsmouth


Checkatrade Trophy

Portsmouth 2 (Pitman 10, Green 83) Arsenal 1 (Saka 66)

Arsenal U21s’ inaugural involvement in the Checkatrade Trophy is over after a late Andre Green goal saw Freddie Ljungberg’s side fall to a 2-1 defeat away to Portsmouth.

The hosts, who are flying in League One, took the lead courtesy of Brett Pitman in the 10th minute but Arsenal managed to pull level in the second half courtesy of the terrific talent that is Bukayo Saka.

Green proceeded to score the winner, however, with Arsenal suffering further frustrating when Laurent Koscielny, making the second appearance of his comeback, had to be substituted in the 85th minute after suffering a knock.

Arsenal were without Emile Smith Rowe, Joe Willock and Eddie Nketiah, while Robbie Burton was missing through suspension and Julio Pleguezuelo remains injured.

Zech Medley, Charlie Gilmour and Saka, who all made their first-team debuts last week, started the game.



Osei Tutu-Gilmour-Omole-Bramall


John Jules

Subs: Coyle (for Omole, 65), Tormey (for Koscielny, 85). Not used: Hein, Bola, Thompson, Olowu, Zelalem.

Arsenal started positively, with Saka having an effort saved but Portsmouth soon started to take control of the game.

Daniel Ballard has developed a reputation for making goalline clearances, and he performed such an action again in the eighth minute to keep Portsmouth at bay.

Deyan Iliev then reacted well to make a save, but the Macedonian goalkeeper could do nothing to keep out Pitman’s effort.

Louis Dennis headed wide as Portsmouth sought to extend their lead, and Adam May then hit the post from distance with a ferocious strike.

Dennis caused numerous problems for the Arsenal defence in the closing stages of the first half, and in truth the young Gunners were fortunate to go into the break with just a one-goal deficit.

Arsenal gradually started to improve in the second half, with Gilmour shooting over from distance and Trae Coyle then entered the fray in place of Tobi Omole, who had just been booked.

May hit the crossbar for Portsmouth but Saka then equalised for Arsenal with a well-struck effort.

Tyreece John-Jules subsequently had an attempt closed down as Arsenal sought to take the lead, although they had to be wary of the considerable threat that Portsmouth were still providing.

Dennis came close to scoring for Portsmouth, with Iliev then thwarting Green as he saved with his legs.

In the 83rd minute Portsmouth were back in front, with Green finishing well following an impressive move.

Koscielny had to be withdrawn shortly afterwards, with Nathan Tormey entering the fray for a rare appearance.

Despite three minutes of added time, Arsenal were unable to get a second goal and were knocked out of the competition.

Had the likes of Smith Rowe, Nketiah and Willock been available, the outcome may have been rather different, but playing in the Checkatrade Trophy has still been a beneficial experience for Arsenal’s youngsters in terms of enabling them to test themselves against senior opponents.


Matt Smith strikes but Arsenal U18s are beaten by Everton in Premier League Cup

Arsenal U18s were beaten 2-1 at home by Everton in the Premier League Cup today.

Midfielder Matt Smith opened the scoring but Everton scored two late goals.

Despite the result, Arsenal do still have a chance of finishing in second place in the group and making it through to the knockout stages.

Schoolboy midfielder Miguel Azeez featured, as did attacker Sam Greenwood.

Loan report – Chambers, Nelson and Nwakali feature


Calum Chambers played the whole game as Fulham lost 2-0 to Chelsea.

Reiss Nelson came on in the 64th minute as Hoffenheim drew 1-1 with Schalke

Kelechi Nwakali was brought on in the 75th minute of Porto B’s 2-1 defeat against Mafra.

Krystian Bielik wasn’t involved as Charlton Athletic lost 2-0 to Doncaster Rovers in the FA Cup.

Also in the FA Cup, Matt Macey played the entirety of Plymouth Argyle’s 2-1 defeat to Oxford United.

Takuma Asano was an unused substitute as Hannover lost 2-0 to Hertha Berlin.

David Ospina‘s Napoli face Empoli away tomorrow night.


Report – Musah and Balogun hit braces as Arsenal U18s thrash Fulham

U18 Premier League

Arsenal 6 (Musah 12, 50, Balogun 22 (pen.), 48, M. Smith 26, Swanson 90) Fulham 2 (Ablade 79, Elliot 82)

To continue a hugely positive week for the Arsenal academy, the U18s thrashed Fulham 6-2 at London Colney today, with Yunus Musah and Folarin Balogun both hitting braces.

Arsenal were without the suspended Vontae Daley-Campbell, so Zak Swanson moved to right-back, with schoolboy Miguel Azeez coming into the side.

Schoolboy Nathan Butler-Oyedeji, who has been offered a scholarship for next season, received his first call-up at this level as he made the bench.

Arsenal started brightly and they took the lead in the 12th minute when another schoolboy, Musah, finished well following impressive work from Ben Cottrell.

The young Gunners missed two penalties in the defeat to Tottenham Hotspur last weekend, but they made no mistake on this occasion, with Folarin Balogun making it 2-0 from the spot in the 22nd minute.

Musah then set up the ever-improving Matt Smith to score as Arsenal took a 3-0 lead into the interval.

There were further goals to come just after the interval, with Smith turning provider as both Balogun and Musah added to their tallies.

Fulham, to their credit, continued to battle on and they were rewarded for their persistence when Terry Ablade and Harvey Elliot scored.

Arsenal remained largely in control, however, and added a sixth goal in stoppage time when substitute Matthew Dennis teed up Swanson.

Arsenal: Hein; Swanson, McGuinness, Spencer-Adams, Lopez; M. Smith, Azeez; Cottrell, Greenwood, Musah; Balogun.

Subs: Okonkwo, Dennis, Flaherty, Alebiousu, Butler-Oyedeji.