A Promising Future with Arsenal’s Young Guns
Since joining Arsenal, Arsène Wenger has unearthed or brought through some immense talents to the first team; often finding diamonds in the rough or future superstars in the youth ranks of other clubs and nurturing them into top class players. Arsène has often been credited with having a magic touch when it comes to unearthing undiscovered talents. Some football pundits call it luck, but similar to a Las Vegas casino that constantly modernises its games to attract new players and keep up with the competition; Arsenal’s roster is always updated with fresh-faced talents in a bid to keep North London red and Arsenal in competition. Here are some of the future aces in the pack to look out for over the next few seasons.
After 6 seasons without a trophy at Arsenal, a young, raw defender from the lower leagues was always going to struggle to meet the expectations of a restless crowd however the 21-year-old defender has since gone on to win over the majority of the Arsenal crowd. After an injury to first-choice Sagna last season, the lad from Harlow displayed his improved credentials as a dependable right back with five impressive starting appearances in the 2012-2013 Premier League campaign. Jenkinson has improved tremendously over the past 2 years and Arsenal supporters enjoy seeing a fellow supporter doing well and running out on the Emirates pitch. With Sagna entering the last year of his contract expect to see a lot more of Jenkinson this year before making the step up to being first choice.
Over the past two seasons, The Ox, has got a taste of what it’s like to play under the bright lights of the Premier League and generally has acquitted himself well. Alex gave a man-of-the-match performance against Bwin’s partycasino.com affiliate club, Manchester United in 2012 but in the past season was used a lot less than anticipated and often found himself playing the impact sub role. Physically solid, technically gifted and tenacious, there is no limit to Oxlade-Chamberlain’s potential. Currently plying his trade on the wing, expect to see this starlet become a future central-midfield star that many will envy Arsenal for having in their ranks.
My wild-card. Thomas joined Arsenal in January 2012 and despite been restricted by injury at first he had impressive pre-season in Malaysia, scoring two goals. A goalscorer from midfield is something Arsenal haven’t had in a long time and only briefly with Cesc Fabregas who took a while to find his shooting boots. Thomas put in a claim to be that future midfield scorer for Arsenal with 9 goals for the reserves et al. Thomas featured prominently for the reserves last season and put in a mouth-watering senior debut in his substitute appearance in the astonishing 7-5 game against Reading in the League Cup. Thomas’ game time this season will most likely be restricted to the cups but expect to see this young German pushing for a senior spot in a year or so.
Probably the most promising youngster on Arsenal’s books and possibly even in the country. 17 year old Gnabry has the killer moves of a seasoned attacking midfielder and put them on display for all to see during the recent NextGen Series. He put in an astonishing performance for Arsenal and netted the lone goal of a 1-nil victory over CSKA Moscow. Using his exceptional versatility and technical football ability, the German teen impressed everyone during his stints in the country’s under-16, under-17, and under-18 teams, en route to earning his first professional contract last year. Serge made four first team appearances last season, even appearing in the Premier League and the Champions League and is expected to get even more game time this season. Some are predicting he will get a loan move at some point this season but I can see Wenger keeping his talents for himself for a while longer before sending him off for much needed first team experience.
There are many more players we should keep an eye on like Olsson, Bellerin, Toral, Aneke, Ansah, Miquel, Akpom, Campbell, Miyachi and new signing Sanogo but these are my picks for the moment. It may seem a little bit of a cheat to include two established first team players but of all the players under 21 at the club these are the ones I see playing regularly in the next two years and my wild-card, Eisfeld.
What do you think? Will these players make it? Will others move ahead of them? Use the comments section below and let me know what you think.
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