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Reiss Nelson, Eddie Nketiah, Joe Willock: Arsenal youngsters

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MessagePosté le: Jeu 29 Mar - 08:22 (2018) Sujet du message: Reiss Nelson, Eddie Nketiah, Joe Willock: Arsenal youngsters Répondre en citant

sbo222 Arsenal are 13 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham in the Premier League, leaving Europa League success as their only realistic hope of earning a Champions League spot for next season. So should Wenger prioritise youth domestically?

Ainsley Maintland-Niles has been the flag-bearer for Arsenal's academy this season, making 23 appearances in all competitions including six Premier League starts, but who else is pushing for more involvement?

Wenger is under pressure to get results after an underwhelming campaign, but in Reiss Nelson, Eddie Nketiah and Joe Willock, there are three more rising stars in the frame. We assess their prospects ahead of Arsenal's meeting with Stoke on live on Sky Sports on Super Sunday.

Reiss Nelson
Reiss Nelson is arguably the most exciting young player on Arsenal's books. The teenager was handed his first professional contract shortly after his 17th birthday last at the start of 2017. He then put himself on the first-team radar with a string of eye-catching performances in pre-season.

Arsene Wenger was as impressed by his temperament as his technical ability. "He has shown that he can dribble, go past people and he isn't fazed by the occasion," he said after Nelson's starring display in a 5-2 win over Benfica in the Emirates Cup. "He looks confident and it's good for him to play in these kind of games." sbo222

Eddie Nketiah
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's arrival at the Emirates Stadium in January and Alexandre Lacazette's imminent return from injury could be bad news for Eddie Nketiah's immediate first-team prospects, but many supporters would be happy to see him given more opportunities.

Nketiah, who joined Arsenal from Chelsea as a youngster, has been a cult hero at the Emirates Stadium since October, when he stepped off the bench in an EFL Cup tie with Norwich, equalising with his first touch and heading the winner in extra-time. "Eddie, Eddie, Eddie," was the chant from the stands, with Wenger praising his instinctive finishing ability afterwards.

Joe Willock
Chris Willock's decision to walk out on Arsenal for Benfica in the summer was a disappointing one for his boyhood club - he was regarded as one of their most talented young players - but it has been offset at least to some extent by the emergence of his younger brother, Joe.

Willock Jnr, a rangy central midfielder with good passing ability, made his senior debut as a late substitute against Doncaster Rovers back in September and his first start in a Europa League tie away to BATE Borisov a few days later. After further appearances against Red Star and Norwich, he was rewarded with a new long-term contract in November.

Willock has impressed with his athleticism and cool-headed passing under pressure, and the new deal bodes well for his future, but could he get more opportunities before the end of the campaign?

He is perhaps the furthest away of the three. Willock struggled on his last start - the 4-2 defeat to Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup - and his only appearance since then came as a substitute in the home tie with Ostersunds in the Europa League.

There is plenty of competition for places in central midfield, too. Aaron Ramsey is back from a spell on the sidelines and Jack Wilshere is expected to recover swiftly despite being forced out of England duty. Mohamed Elneny's new contract was another reminder of the challenge facing Willock to force his way in. sbo222

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MessagePosté le: Jeu 29 Mar - 08:22 (2018) Sujet du message: Publicité

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