Saturday, February 4, 2023

Crowley showcases potential, but must be given time to develop

There are some crops of Arsenal youngsters that immediately strike you as being full of talent. The class of 2007/08, many members of which went on to win the FA Youth Cup and Premier Academy League a year later, certainly fell into that category, but, so far, the current batch of hopefuls does not appear, at least at first glance, to contain too many players who could be fast-tracked into the first-team within a few seasons.

One player, however, continues to stand out, and if you haven’t heard the name Dan Crowley before, you may well do so on many occasions in years to come. The England youth international midfielder, who only recently turned 16, was signed from Aston Villa in the summer to much acclaim, and proceeded to turn in some impressive performances during the Arsenal XI’s pre-season programme.

For all his potential, Crowley has started the campaign with Carl Laraman’s U18 side, but, at present, that is the perfect level for the talented young midfielder to develop as he can excel against players of a similar age, rather than being subjected to robust challenges from more experienced professionals in U21 fixtures.

Crowley’s performances in the opening two games of the season have served to highlight his undoubted talent, with the first-year scholar scoring his first goal for the U18s in last weekend’s 4-2 defeat to Fulham. The strike was a fine one; an effort which was struck well out of the goalkeeper’s reach, but the sublime piece of skill that preceded it was what left most spectators amazed.

This is a player who knows exactly where to find his team-mates on the pitch, whilst also being unafraid to go for goal himself, as he proved with a man-of-the-match winning performance for Villa against Arsenal at London Colney last season.

That said, there are still many steps remaining in Crowley’s development if he is to reach the pinnacle of the game. As alluded to earlier he does struggle a little at present when he comes up against opponents who possess a propensity to foul him at every possible opportunity, whilst, for all his calmness in possession, he can be guilty of holding onto the ball for too long on occasion.

If all goes well, though, and Crowley continues to develop as the campaign progresses, he could well see himself involved in the U21s during the second half of the season. It will be some time before he is even considered to train with the first-team and he must remain level-headed as he rises up the ranks, but, given time, this summer’s acquisition of Dan Crowley could prove to be a very astute one indeed.

Jeorge Bird is the author of  Follow him on Twitter @jeorgebird

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is he supposed to fight with Zelalem for the same spot (since i think they play in the same position)? Too bad there’s not much chance that he’ll become better than him i think


Think he’s more attacking than Zelalem. He looked really good at dribbling and creating chances from what I saw at Villa, he played higher up than Zelalem has played for Arsenal. Probably play a Cazorla role or on the wings in the future.

Deflated But Optimistic

The way we are going with injures he will have to be fast tracked too the first team.


Cesc was old enough at 15!


He didn’t come to Arsenal until he was 16 though 🙂


I saw a video of him play in that game against arsenal the boy is just amazing he might get a call up to the first team next year


Always good to hear. Hope his development goes well.


Still not a signing, spurs strengthening extremely well. If we lose to sp*rs on sunday and dont sign anyone the club will be thrown back into turmoil. Their squad is much deeper and full of talent. What the fuck are we playing at? Do we not want to compete? Do we not want to reach our potential. How come they are signing plenty of class, all of which would benefit our squad, yet they have no champs league and we do? Even with champs league we cant attract anyone. This clubs being allowed to rot and stagnate


Everyone thinks they have the prettiest wife at home…

Or in this case that slag down the road has a nicer pair or tits but that’s all they are:

Just expensive mammories

Bould's Eyeliner


Because the same people who recruit for youth academy are also our scouts for the first team, right?

aliyu musa

Who cares all we need is big name signing.

Thanks Jeorge.

Football loving Arsenal fans I guess. Glory hunters not so much.

Sex Fabergé

I offer you Sinthaweechai Hathairattanakool of Chonburi FC and the Thailand national team. (No, I didn’t make that up…)


Can all the spud admirers just go and support them and then shut up. Grow some, you lily livered whiners.


Sorry, 16 years 177 days. 😉


Dickarse youre an idiot, let me check back with you after the game. U’d have to be a thick cunt to not be worried by their signings and our lack of squad depth. When the margin was so fine last season. Such short memories


Capital cup 3rd round draw, west brom v arsenal,

to our great stadium

Please make some loud bang bang noise for them player on Sunday for God’s Sake.


Hope players like Crowley and zelalem are in fifa 14. I love developing the youth players in career mode.

Managed to get eisfeld to a 79 in a couple of seasons (ok a lot) by throwing him on in the 80th minute lol

Tom Gun

“talented young midfielder”
“undoubted talent”
“he does struggle a little at present when he comes up against opponents who possess a propensity to foul him at every possible opportunity”

This lad is made for Arsenal 😉

LANS = Like A Noob Signing


and Carlos vela netted for real sociodad in the fixture against Lyon in the ucl. we seem to let the wrong youngsters go at times. sigh


netted twice*

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