Balogun hits the spot as Holding and Smith Rowe feature for U23s

27

Highly rated young striker Folarin Balogun scored a hat-trick of penalties as Arsenal U23s ran out 3-1 winners over Blackburn Rovers last night.

The 18 year old tucked away three spot kicks to enhance his burgeoning reputation as one of the Academy’s rising stars, but from a first team point of view all eyes were on Rob Holding as he continued his comeback from a cruciate knee ligament injury.

The centre-half played 63 minutes before being replaced by Joseph Olowu, and his recovery schedule appears to be well on track. The 23 year old has been in full training with the first team squad since the summer tour of the US, and has earmarked the period after the first Interlull of the new season as the time when he’ll be ready to make his comeback.

Chances are he’ll play some Europa League football first before being thrust back into Premier League action, but having picked up the injury in early December 2018, he’s almost ready to get going again.

Meanwhile, Emile Smith Rowe got 45 minutes under his belt as he makes his way back from a groin problem which has seen him struggle to play any kind of football in the last few months. He had a loan spell at RB Leipzig last season, but only managed three brief substitute appearances in the Bundesliga.

The midfielder could well depart before the end of the transfer window, with the club keen for him to follow in the footsteps of Reiss Nelson and spend a season on loan before coming back home to stake a claim for a first team place at Arsenal.

There is interest in him again from Germany, and the window there closes on September 2nd, so there’s time for him to prove his fitness to any potential suitors.

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Mark WahlBergkamp
Mark WahlBergkamp
9 months ago

Balo-Gunner.

Giroulski
Giroulski
9 months ago

Technically he scored two penalties. The other he tucked away the rebound.

Rambling Pete
Rambling Pete
9 months ago

Great news that Holding is going to be back soon and is it just me or do we have a huge batch of attacking talent at the club right now? Saka, Balogun, Nelson, Nketiah, John-Jules. It’s almost as if the Arsenal coaches have created some kind of laboratory in which they’re playing around with the recipe for the perfect forward. A little bit of pace, a dash of dribbling, a pinch of finishing, three teaspoons of flair and creativity, all topped off with a knob of muscle butter. Then you just bake in the oven for 16 years and in… Read more »

Danny
Danny
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

I want some of what you’ve been smoking!!

YoungFabregas
YoungFabregas
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

You have been missed Pete <3

GoonerDane
GoonerDane
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

We’ve missed your rambling rants, Pete! Welcome back

ToucanSam
ToucanSam
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

I’ll smoke whatever it is your having.

Chidi
Chidi
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Terribly missed Rambling Pete, LANS…. ?

Grymelock
Grymelock
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

That was utterly insane, and yet completely rational. Precisely what I come to arseblog for; not affirmations of shit we already know and can see with our own eyes, no, I want shoehorned Groening references. Though preferably with a happier ending ?

Mpls
Mpls
9 months ago
Reply to  Grymelock

What’s not funny about otter testicles?!

SuperTom7
SuperTom7
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Are you Charlie Brooker in disguise? You have been missed Rambling Pete.

Upamecano but downalego
Upamecano but downalego
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

‘Jurassic Bark’ was the episode name, and I too was distraught throughout the end credits (and for many days after). Really powerful stuff, poor Seymour ?

Upamecano but downalego
Upamecano but downalego
9 months ago

Nearly 20years and still it hits you right in the sad spot

https://youtu.be/AK3PWHxoT_E

Thierry Bergkamp
Thierry Bergkamp
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Rambling Pete!!!!
The legend is here?

David Hilliers Arm Cast
David Hilliers Arm Cast
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Do people still use FireWire cables?

Unnecessarilystupid
Unnecessarilystupid
9 months ago

Little bit of Ken M in there with our Pete

Thierry Walcott
Thierry Walcott
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Oh, you’re back! I’m so happy right now it’s insane 🙂 Thanks, Pete

Clockendrider
Clockendrider
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

I want hover boards invented first.
Scientists are rubbish.

Ron
Ron
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Wonderful to have you back, Pete. Personally speaking, I really enjoyed the procreation part of having kids. Everything else though, I’m with you.

A Different George
A Different George
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Otter lunacy.

Scott P
Scott P
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

This is why you check every article on this site just in case…

arsepedant
arsepedant
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Marvellous stuff. When is the Rambling Pete book going to be published?

Temi
Temi
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Oh how we missed the, Sir Pete of the great ole Rambles

Julie
Julie
9 months ago
Reply to  Rambling Pete

Wish I could buy a book of all Pete’s rambles, never fail to tickle me.

Berlingoon
Berlingoon
9 months ago

Is it just the pic or does this guy looks very strong for an 18 year old lad?

Goonereality
Goonereality
9 months ago

Looks like a good performance. Hopefully, we will not only produce the quality at this level but get at least a few players through to the first team squad on a regular basis – and then into the first team as regulars (the final, notoriously tricky, step). There seems to be a determination by the new management team to do this, which is welcome news.

Tony Adams Nose
Tony Adams Nose
9 months ago
Reply to  Goonereality

It’s such a massive step up. Just the physicality of first team football. To show how far you have to come to make it, if you put Nelson and Willock back in the U23’s right now, they will look like superstars yet they are just scratching the surface of first team football.
I really hope some of these kids make it as I can’t remember a time when we had such a wealth of great academy players.