Arsenal have exploded into life in the January transfer window with the signing of Leandro Trossard and Jakub Kiwior, and the Gunners are seemingly not slowing down with Ivan Fresneda now set to join.
According to the Daily Mail, the Gunners have reached a £17m agreement with the Real Valladolid wonderkid that could soon seen the teenage right-back join Arsenal, with the 18-year-old regarded as one of the best defensive talents in all of Europe.
Arsenal are no strangers to signing teenage players, with Wenger making it a unique trick of his to find these hidden gems that would go on to define his squads and to secure the club huge profits in the transfer market, with Nicolas Anelka arguably the most famous of these cases.
Indeed, Arsenal could soon have another winner on their hands in Fresneda, but who have been the Gunner’s best teenage signings over the years? Here are our top-three.
Arsenal’s three best teenage signings amid Fresneda arrival
Theo Walcott – 2006
Expectations were high for Theo Walcott when Arsenal paid a total of £12m to sign the-then 16-year-old winger from Southampton. Yet 397 appearances, 108 goals and three FA Cups later, the transfer is arguably one of the best Arsenal have ever made in the Premier League era.
One of the fastest players of his time, Walcott was a regular for Arsenal for the good part of 12 seasons, with the 47-cap England international taking the legendary no. 14 shirt directly after Thierry Henry and wearing the kit to the best of his abilities.
Whilst injuries might have stopped Walcott from becoming one of the best in world football, Walcott is still fondly remembered in the red half of north London, with the attacker still playing in the Premier League with former side Southampton.
Aaron Ramsey – 2008
Having become the youngest player in Cardiff City’s history and the youngest player to feature in an FA Cup final this century, the hype was certainly real around teenage midfielder Aaron Ramsey in 2008. Yet despite Manchester United believing they had won the race for the midfielder, it was Arsenal who ultimately sealed a £5m deal.
Much like with Walcott, the signing of Ramsey was one of the best Arsene Wenger made for Arsenal, with the midfielder going on to make 369 appearances in all competitions for the Gunners and scoring the winning goal in not one but two FA Cup finals, ending the north London club’s nine-year drought in 2014.
Whilst injuries plagued the Welsh international’s time with Arsenal, Ramsey was easily one of the best midfielders in the Premier League when fully fit. And many agree that the now-OGC Nice star should have stayed with the Gunners instead of moving to Juventus in 2019.
Gabriel Martinelli – 2019
It might seem strange to include Gabriel Martinelli already on a list like this. But given how good the winger has been for Arsenal since joining in 2019, it’s hard to argue just how important the attacker has been for Mikel Arteta’s project since being signed from the Brazilian fourth-tier.
Edu Gaspar’s first-ever signing for Arsenal since being appointed technical director, Martinelli joined for a reported £7m in the summer of 2019. And whilst there was some excitement over the Sao Paulo-born forward, few would have predicted just how good the winger would turn out to be.
Alongside Bukayo Saka, Martinelli has formed one of the best wing duos in the Premier League this season and likely one that could dominate the division for years to come. And with the 21-year-old now a full Brazilian international, there’s no telling just how far Edu’s signing can go for both club and country.