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Tony Adams compares 'extraordinary' Arsenal star to Pires, Townsend thinks he's more like Scholes

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Speaking on Matchday Live on Optus Sport, Arsenal legend Tony Adams and former Premier League star Andy Townsend heaped praise on Emile Smith Rowe after his performance against Leeds United last night.

The Gunners were at it from the first whistle and absolutely battered the visitors. We were 3-0 up at half-time, and we didn’t take too long to grab another after the break.

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Smith Rowe wasn’t among the goals but he was brilliant yesterday. His assist to Aubameyang’s third goal reminded Adams of Arsenal invincible Robert Pires while his overall game convinced Townsend that he was Paul Scholes in the making.

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Adams said: “Smith Rowe, he picks (Aubameyang for the fourth goal) out, he’s got Robert Pires feet. He could run quicker with the ball than I could without it. This kid has talent, plays everything one touch.

“His one-touch play is quite extraordinary. I have not seen a player like this since Dennis (Bergkamp) to be honest with you, who used to tap it off, can see the play before he gets the ball.”

Townsend said: “When I look at Smith Rowe, they have a better one (than Odegaard) there already. He is Paul Scholes in the making. He can play as a 10, he showed today he can play off one side and come inside, he has got that fantastic ability, awareness, of what is going on around him – not all young players have that.”

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Arsenal Insider’s view:

That really is some praise. We all know how good Pires was for us all those years ago. The Frenchman was a joy to watch and his performances helped us become one of the greatest sides in the history of English football.

Scholes, on the other hand, was one of the biggest reasons why Manchester United were the force they once were. He is one of the greatest midfielders to ever grace the game, and not many people in the world are likened to him.

Comparisions to two Premier League greats is massive for Smith Rowe. He has all the qualities to go on and accomplish everything they did in their careers, and Arsenal fans can’t wait to see how good he will be in his peak.

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