After seeing Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe succeed at the highest level, Arsenal legend Ian Wright has urged Mikel Arteta to give Reiss Nelson, Miguel Azeez and Folarin Balogun a chance in the remaining games of the season.
The Gunners don’t really have a lot to play for. Our chances of making it into Europe are extremely slim, and seeing that the only positives of our season are Smith Rowe and Saka’s performances, it might be worth a shot to give a few other Hale End wonderkids a chance.
Nelson has played and scored in the Premier League before, but Balogun and Azeez have barely got a look in. Wright wants Arteta to give the three of them a chance in the coming games, and we can’t really disagree with him.
He said on Matchday Live: “Someone like Reiss Nelson. I felt for Reiss. He got called back from being on loan in Germany. I know we had a big game in the Under-23s the other day.
“People like Miguel Azeez, people like Folarin Balogun, I would like to see them in the matchdays now. I think the fans would like to see that so that it will give them a lift of what’s coming.
“If the youngsters are going in, these are the games you would like to think they should have at least been in the matchday squad. Maybe give them 10, 15 minutes to have a look at them.”
The Insider’s View:
If there’s one thing we’ve learnt this season, it’s that we should trust our young players more. Saka and Smith Rowe have carried Arsenal this term, and there’s no reason why a few other Hale End starlets can’t do the same.
Nelson, sadly, looks like he’s on his way out, but Azeez and Balogun are both viewed by many as the future of our club. The two Arsenal wonderkids have the potential to reach the very top, and the only way they’ll be able to do that is if they get a chance to showcase their skills.
Arsenal have nothing to play for in the Premier League, which makes this the perfect time to give these kids a chance. Hopefully, Arteta listens to Wrighty and hands Azeez and Balogun a few minutes in the coming games.