Ismael Bennacer says he’ll talk to Arsene Wenger about going on loan again next season having garnered valuable first team experience with French side Tours.
The 19-year-old has enjoyed a productive 2017 so far having earned a late call-up to the Algeria national side for the African Cup of Nations in Gabon prior to sealing his move to Ligue 2 at the end of January.
With his path to regular participation in Wenger’s first team blocked by more esteemed colleagues, the signing from Arles-Avignon admits he’s enjoyed being back in France where he’s played eight times so far.
“We were bottom of the table when I arrived, and now we’re out of the relegation zone. I play, gain experience and am doing well.”
He added: “There are a lot of people and competition for place in the midfield [at Arsenal]. I know what I’m capable of, I’m here to work.
“There’s room for improvement, whether I get game time or not, and I’m progressing well at Arsenal. I train often with the first team, and just have to work hard while I wait for my chance.
“Wenger gives me a lot of advice about my career. It was him who advised me to go on loan, he wanted me to play and to gain experience. At first we didn’t talk much, but that’s changed over time. We’ll make an assessment in May and see where we are.
“I’d like to go back out on loan, but I’m going to go over things with Wenger in May, and it’ll be up to him to decide.
“Personally, I’d really like to go out on loan because, at my age, I need to get as much game time as I can and not ask myself too many questions.”
Wenger was full of praise for Bennacer just before sanctioning the teenager’s move.
Speaking in January, the boss told Arsenal Player: “He’s a player who is not spectacular, but a very efficient player,” the manager told Arsenal Player. “He’s the kind of player who, once you put him in the team, you don’t take him out anymore.
“He can defend very well, he’s a fighter, a left-footed player and very efficient going forward. He’s a real box-to-box player.
“He can do all kinds of jobs. He is still young, still lacks a little bit of experience, but is a very promising player.”