8:32PM 45 minutes Fuchs hurls a long throw into the Arsenal area that almost flies all the way in before Cech palms it away. It was a foul on the goalkeeper, and surely it wouldn’t have counted anyway. 8:30PM 43 minutes Another superb in-swinging cross by Albrighton but Chamberlain makes a terrific recovery header to take it off Mahrez’s head. Holding tries to stroll out with the ball again, but gives the ball away in a miss-communication with Bellerin 8:26PM 41 minutes Xhaka releases Bellerin for an Arsenal counter-attack and Chamberlain’s cross deflects out for a corner. Corner reaches Kolasinac who smashes the ball against Ndidi’s arm, but he was too close for it to be a penalty. 8:25PM 39 minutes Arsenal are not quite sure whether to throw bodies forward in search of an equaliser or just get through to half-time and re-group. 8:23PM 36 minutes Alexis Sanchez watches on. 8:20PM 33 minutes Rob Holding was one of the finds of the season last term but is having a nightmare so far. Tries to bring the ball out from the back and play a line-splitting pass but it is cut out. Okazaki gets on the end of another left-wing cross and nods just wide. 8:18PM 31 minutes More problems down Arsenal’s right hand side. Mahrez gets free down that flank and swings a ball across Arsenal’s area. Chamberlain and Kolasinac give the ball away in quick succession. 8:15PM Leicester turnaround Albrighton gets down the left and whips a wicked ball across Arsenal’s six yard box. Vardy nips in front of Kolasinac and slams the ball into the roof of the net with his left foot. 8:14PM GOAL! 2-1 Leicester Jamie Vardy puts Leicester ahead. 8:14PM 26 minutes Two good chances for Arsenal. First, Welbeck exchanged passes with Ozil on the edge of the penalty area. The Englanf man hesitated, and his shot was blocked but he pounced on the loose ball and got to the bar-line but the cut-back evaded everyone. Moments later Kolasinac fired a half-volley straight at Schmeichel. 8:11PM Leicester’s goal Arsenal 1 – 1 Leicester (Shinji Okazaki, 5 min) 8:11PM 24 minutes Arsenal not letting Leicester out to counter-punch as often now. Lacazette a little stupid there by pushing Albrighton in the back right in the corner, eases the pressure somewhat. The Frenchman has been very impressive so far, very economical in possession. 8:08PM 21 minutes The game resembled a school playground for a while, perhaps due to all that pent-up tension. It has settled down into a more serene rhythm now with Arsenal dictating possession, and Welbeck spurns a good chance after Ozil’s pull-back in the box. In his defence it was a fine block by Maguire. 8:05PM Touch maps Arsenal vs Leicester 8:05PM 18 minutes Positive dart forward from Chamberlain after Xhaka switched the play. His low cross took a deflection and it just wouldn’t fall for one of the Arsenal bodies in the penalty area. Kolasinac nips in to set Arsenal away on the break, and Lacazette shows good strength to swivel away from Maguire and win a foul 8:02PM 16 minutes Gary Neville spoke in worrying tones about this Arsenal back three, and he has been proven right so far. Difficult for Wenger to do anything about it really, there just isn’t the personnel available. On the positive side, they are threatening themselves. Ozil looks a little off the pace, perhaps due to a lack of minutes. 8:00PM 13 minutes Holding again looks anxious as he fouls Okazaki. Arsenal looks a bag of nerves back there. Leicester will be asking them to commit more and more bodies forward. 7:57PM 10 minutes Arsenal get themselves going again through the passing of Granit Xhaka and enjoy some territory in the Leicester defensive third. Leicester will be happy to draw Arsenal out on the evidence of the early stages, however. The hosts look vulnerable to early balls over the top. 7:54PM 8 minutes As you will gather, this game is wide open. Leicester causing Arsenal all manner of problems down their left-hand side, with Vardy pulling into the space behind Rob Holding. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain drives forward and gets a left-footed drive off, but was always rising. 7:52PM GOAL! 1-1 Leicester pushed forward straight away in search of an immediate response and have found it. Marc Albrighton swung the a deep cross in from the right and Harry Maguire headed the ball back across goal for Shinji Okazaki to nod home from five yards. 7:49PM Debuts do not get much better than that What a start for Alexandre Lacazette. Arsenal switched play from left-to-right and found Hector Bellerin. He cut the ball back to the supporting Mohamed Elneny whose clipped cross was met by the head of Lacazette, who glanced the ball into the left-hand corner from six yards out. 7:46PM We’re off Alexandre Lacazette kicks us off and we are under way in the 2017-18 Premier League. Arsenal shooting towards the Clock End. 7:42PM Teams on their way out England boss Gareth Southgate has plum position in the director’s box, which is more than Roy Hodgson got when he returned to Anfield as Three Lions manager. A loud bellow of ‘COME ON BOYS’ from Wes Morgan, and the two sides make their way onto a typically immaculate Emirates surface. Matty James is making his first competitive start for 825 days for Leicester with Danny Drinkwater injured. 7:38PM Former Liverpool midfielder Jan Molby in attendance Credit: PA 7:35PM Warm-ups now over The players (and Gary and Kelly) head off the pitch with kick-off less than 10 minutes away. 7:28PM Craig Shakespeare speaks Sky have a few tricks up their sleeve for the new season, and now Neville and new presenter Kelly Coates are interviewing Shakespeare on the pitch in the middle of a warm-up. Sounds very pleased with the business Leicester has done, and new signing Harry Maguire starts tonight while Vicente Iborra is out injured. 7:22PM Why wouldn’t you want a life-size cut-out of Arsene Wenger? Credit: Reuters 7:14PM Is that a pig flying overhead? No, its Ivan Gazidis giving an interview Gary Neville has the great privilege of grabbing a word with Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis, who says success for Arsenal this season is challenging seriously for the title. Says clubs such as Monaco, Borussia Dortmund and Sevilla are inspirations that show creativity and intelligent policy can trump spending. He also claimed Arsenal could not find a manager in Europe that matched the Frenchman’s credentials. 7:08PM Wenger speaks Credit: Getty Images Wenger says Arsenal have enjoyed a smoother pre-season than in previous years when they have come a cropper on the opening day. Incidentally, Arsenal’s three league titles under Wenger all came after tournament-less summers (1998, 2002 and 2004). 7:03PM They made it through boot-camp, but were voted off at judges’ houses Credit: PA 6:57PM Two left backs in Arsenal’s back three Per Mertesacker has not recovered from the facial injury sustained in the Community Shield, and with Laurent Koscielny suspended, Gabriel injured and Shkodran Mustafi light of training, Arsenal are a little short at the back. Nacho Monreal, one of the league’s unsung heroes, did not put a foot wrong when shuffling across to the middle of the three at Wembley. Sead Kolasinac will play on the outside of the trio, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the unusual position of left wing-back. Leicester’s attack is not the tallest and built upon speed, so it might not be the worst night to flood the side with full-backs. Sky’s coverage is about to start shortly, and it looks like Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville are now interviewers as well as pundits. 6:52PM Conservatism from Shakespeare? A few surprises in both line-ups tonight. Kelechi Iheanacho and Damarai Gray both start on the bench, and the plan might be to stay in the game for as long as possible before unleashing their pace and trickery late on. Mahrez getting the nod is a huge call given that he appeared on the verge of a move to Roma only days ago and has publicly stated his desire to leave. 6:46PM Arsenal starting XI and subs It’s time… for the first time this @premierleague season, here’s our team ��#AFCvLCFCpic.twitter.com/JRbPWYQKTo— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) 11 August 2017 6:45PM Leicester starting XI Tonight’s starting XI: Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan (c), Maguire, Fuchs, Mahrez, Ndidi, James, Albrighton, Okazaki, Vardy. #ArsLeipic.twitter.com/rAfAVkDNED— Leicester City (@LCFC) 11 August 2017 6:43PM Mesut Ozil is at the Emirates The German is struggling with an ankle problem, but returned to full training on Wednesday and was in the squad that stepped off the coach at the Emirates’ underground car park. No sign of Aaron Ramsey on the pictures I saw, but perhaps he was lingering on his way in. 6:40PM Arsenal’s last seven opening day results Liverpool 1 Arsenal 1 (2010) Newcastle 0 Arsenal 0 (2011) Arsenal 0 Sunderland 0 (2012) Arsenal 1 Aston Villa 3 (2013) Arsenal 2 Crystal Palace 1 (2014) Arsenal 0 West Ham 2 (2015) Arsenal 3 Liverpool 4 (2016) 6:33PM Sky keeping Gary Neville busy or Arsenal Fan TV’s new presenter? Credit: AFP 6:32PM A good omen? The last time Arsenal began a Premier League campaign at home to Leicester, they reached the UEFA Cup final (1998-9). Thierry Henry made his Arsenal debut that day as a half-time substitute and another French striker, Alexandre Lacazette does the same tonight. 6:30PM Preview A summer of listless weekends and vacant weeknights is finally brought to a close this evening as the Premier League returns with Arsenal against Leicester City at the Emirates. Starting the season under floodlights on a Friday is a novelty, though Arsenal fans will recall one of the greatest nights in their history was played out on a balmy Friday night – when Michael Thomas’ goal won the first Division One title when it was up for grabs at Anfield in 1989. The consensus holds that Arsene Wenger’s side face another slog to make the top four, with most predictions pegging them around fifth or sixth. Reasons for skepticism include the campaign’s punctuated rhythm due to Europa League football, doubts over the futures of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil, and the usual tendency to play like utter strangers in November and March. The case for the defence: their improvement since Wenger switched to a 3-4-2-1, overcoming Manchester City and Chelsea to win the FA Cup and the promising first impressions of Sead Kolasinac and Alexandre Lacazette. Credit: AFP Arsenal have won just one of their last seven opening weekend fixtures (2-1 at home to Crystal Palace in 2015), and Leicester could prove awkward opponents. It remains to be seen if their revival under Craig Shakespeare was anything more than a dead cat bounce, but the 2016 champions have bought well this summer – the £25m capture of Kelechi Iheanacho is particularly exciting. With the Nigerian, Jamie Vardy and Damarai Gray at their disposal, the visitors have the speed and trickery to hurt Arsenal on the break on a night when they are likely to see little of the ball. The hosts are without Sanchez due to an abdominal injury, while Ozil and Aaron Ramsey trained fully on Thursday despite carrying niggles. We shall find out soon if Wenger gambles on their fitness when team news is official confirmed.