Reuell Walters Arsenal tour
Photo by Alex Burstow - Arsenal FC/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arteta has picked just one academy player for Arsenal's pre-season US tour

Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal are on their way to the United States for their pre-season tour, and among the 33 players called up by Mikel Arteta, young Reuell Walters is the only one from our academy squad.

The Gunners have won both their pre-season games so far. We beat Ipswich Town 5-1 behind closed doors earlier this month, before picking up a 5-3 win over Nurnberg in Germany just last week.

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All eyes will be on the likes of Gabriel Jesus and Fabio Vieira in the United States, where Arsenal are scheduled to play three games in total before heading back to North London.

Reuell Walters is the only academy player in Arsenal’s US tour squad

Arteta handed young Walters his debut against Nurnberg last week, and the 17-year-old really impressed. Despite a shaky start, he coped with the physicality very well and didn’t look out of place against players much senior to him.

An England under-18 international, Walters only joined Arsenal in November 2020. His first taste of academy football, however, actually came at Tottenham Hotspur, a club where he spent four years.

Spurs wanted to keep hold of Walters and even handed him a new contract. However, the youngster decided that he wanted a break from academy football, and spent almost two years away.

As he decided to come back, Arsenal leapfrogged Manchester United and secured his signature, and just about 20 months later, he’s a part of a squad full of senior players going to the United States.

That’s some story, isn’t it?

Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

A look at the full squad

Walters is the only player called up by Mikel Arteta who isn’t officially a part of the first-team squad.

Here’s the full squad for the US tour, where we’ll take on Everton, Orlando City and Chelsea.

Goalkeepers: Aaron Ramsdale, Bernd Leno, Matt Turner, Arthur Okonkwo, Runar Alex Runarsson

Defenders: Kieran Tierney, Nuno Tavares, Gabriel Magalhaes, Pablo Mari, Ben White, Rob Holding, William Saliba, Hector Bellerin, Cedric Soares, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Reuell Walters

Midfielders: Mohamed Elneny, Lucas Torreira, Thomas Partey, Emile Smith Rowe, Albert Sambi Lokonga, Granit Xhaka, Martin Odegaard, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Fabio Vieira,

Forwards: Gabriel Martinelli, Eddie Nketiah, Gabriel Jesus, Nicolas Pepe, Bukayo Saka, Folarin Balogun, Marquinhos. Reiss Nelson

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