Pre-Match Report

Preview: Arsenal U-23 v Leicester City

Balogun

Our under-23s could claim top spot in the Premier League 2 on Saturday when we face Leicester City at Emirates Stadium.

THE STORY SO FAR

We’ve made our best-ever start to a Premier League 2 campaign by winning two of our opening four matches and drawing against Derby and champions, Everton. 

An impressive 3-1 victory against Blackburn Rovers, followed by an Emile Smith-Rowe winner in a 2-1 home victory against Brighton & Hove Albion has seen us open the campaign strongly.

Two draws followed but there was more to those results than meets the eye. We were unlucky to concede late at Emirates Stadium following a dominant attacking display against Everton, and Steve Bould’s side overturned a two-goal deficit to claim a point at Pride Park.

Derby took a commanding lead with goals either side of half-time from Chris Martin and Alex Babos but a wonderfully-worked team move finished off by Robbie Burton gave us a lifeline with 20 minutes to play. Folarin Balogun completed the comeback nine minutes later, scoring his fourth goal of the season.

We currently sit second in the table behind Chelsea on goal difference. 

Emile Smith Rowe

THE OPPOSITION

Leicester have had a inconsistent start to the campaign, but after claiming their first win of the season against Wolves, the Foxes will be desperate to make it two wins in a row. 

They proved good opponents for us in 2018/19 as we recorded home and away victories respectively. Bukayo Saka stole the show as we eased to a 3-0 victory at Emirates Stadium and a Robbie Burton penalty secured three points in a  2-1 victory at Holmes Park. 

The Foxes began their season with back-to-back draws against Everton and Blackburn Rovers and followed it up with a 3-0 defeat at home to Brighton.. 

Their first win of the season was sealed thanks to an Admiral Muskwe strike and a last-minute penalty from George Hirst.

Last season, Leicester finished 10th and narrowly avoided relegation by a single point. 

ONE TO WATCH 

After scoring his first goal of the season against Everton, Tyreece John-Jules looks back to his best.

Our youngster has had to show his versatility throughout the season so far and has flourished in a variety of positions. Due to injuries and availability, Steve Bould has had to play him in central midfield, as a lone striker and on either wing.

His goal against the Toffees is arguably his best to date as he hit an outstanding backheel-volley which looped into the net. 

John-Jules

FOLLOW THE ACTION

You can receive live updates by following our Twitter account @ArsenalAcademy

Stay close to Arsenal.com for our match report and post-match reaction from Steve Bould.

By Sam Cox

 

 

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