In the first pre-season game in Edinburgh, Arsenal suffered a shocking 2-1 defeat to Scottish side Hibernian. Goals from Martin Boyle and Daniel MacKay helped Hibs take a 2-0 lead, with Emile Smith Rowe scoring a late consolation.
Arsenal named a starting XI that was a mix of youth and experience. Arthur Okonkwo, a young goalkeeper, started behind a back four of Cedric Soares, Harry Clarke, Pablo Mari, and Sead Kolasinac.
Just after 20 minutes conceding in humiliating circumstances the Gunners got off to a disastrous start. Cedric attempted a back pass to Okonkwo, but the keeper messed it up, allowing Boyle to tap into an empty net.
In the first half, while Hibs were denied a second goal by the post Arsenal offered little in response. After the break, the Gunners’ problems worsened with Hibs making 2-0 just minutes after Partey had hit the crossbar when MacKay took advantage of some slack marking to nod home from a corner.
Only for half-time substitute Nicolas Pepe’s feeble effort to be easily saved Arsenal was then given a penalty spot opportunity. Smith Rowe, another substitute, finally gave Arsenal something to cheer about nine minutes from time, volleying home Hector Bellerin’s cross at the back post.
The Gunners strived to equalize, but they failed. However, considering Arsenal’s wealth of first-team players, the outcome is surprising. In the next pre-season game on Saturday, Arsenal will meet Rangers and coach Mikel Arteta will be hoping for better performance.
Watch football highlights of the pre-season opener in which Arsenal suffered defeat to Hibernian.