Nelson: I need to take my chances when they come

48

Reiss Nelson says that he’ll have to work hard to earn a regular place in Unai Emery’s starting lineup but he’s up for the challenge and excited about what a new-look Arsenal can achieve this season.

In the absence of senior teammates who are still getting up to full fitness, the England under-21 international produced a composed performance in the opening weekend 1-0 win over Newcastle; his first start for the Gunners in 16 months.

Having been on loan at Hoffenheim for a year, the winger, who was this summer promoted to the first team, was pleased by the trust shown in him by the boss and is now hoping for more minutes by impressing in training.

“For me, I just want to take things as they come,” Nelson told the Evening Standard. “I went away in Germany and I think I did well. But the main goal for me has always been playing in an Arsenal shirt week in, week out.

“The boss told me on Wednesday I would be starting and to get mentally prepared. It was a great gesture from the boss and I’m just happy to be back playing in Arsenal colours.

“I need to be prepared all the time for whenever I get the call-up because I know it’s not guaranteed I’m going to be starting week in, week out with the team-mates we have.”

Nelson also spoke about the arrival of Nicolas Pepe who arrived from Lille for a club-record fee of £72 million. It looks as though the Ivorian will operate on the right side of attack with Nelson challenging Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the opposite flank. The club’s attacking options are a reason for excitement said the 19-year-old.

“We have Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Pepe and Alexandre Lacazette. They are great stars and I’m still only young so I need to sit back and when I get my chance take it,” he said.

“He’s (Pepe) been such a great addition. We’re so happy to have him. He’s always scoring or creating goals, but off the ball he’s also working very hard for the team and as a striker that really helps people like me and everyone else alongside him.

“He’s settled in well and he looks a really good addition. We saw little glimpses on Sunday on the pitch and you could see he has the flair we need on the right-hand side. He can cut inside and shoot as well, so he’s a great addition.

“I think this season can be very exciting. We have all the new additions and that can only help us in the long run.”

guest
48 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Prakhar
Prakhar
9 months ago

We need to give this guy more starts and minutes in the PL. Just his sheer agility, pace and dribbling adds so much to our attack. And in an attacking role he wouldn’t be a big defensive liability due to relative inexperience.

I am liking what I see there.

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Prakhar

He should get plenty of chances in the Cups and in some EPL rotation. Fingers crossed he has the confidence in himself at this level and kicks on because he has the talent and physical attributes to be a big star.

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  Dave M

He’s not going to be second string now that we inexplicably got rid of Iwobi.

We will need him in first choice set up now to balance off Pepe.

Sure Auba can also function left side but one sustained knock to say Laca and we are narrowed in our options.

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Santori

He’s still not a #1 option (nor he should be at this stage – he still has a lot to prove), he’s a rotation piece right now, but if he steps it up he may force himself into more game time and secure a spot. He has opporunity, but he has to seize it. Martinelli and Sahka are both vying for the same spot so he also has competition, which should drive one, two or even all three to step it up and take their games to the next level. I think it’s great that we have these young talented… Read more »

Der32
Der32
9 months ago
Reply to  Dave M

Great point. Perhaps this is why Emery okayed the Iwobi deal too.

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago

Gonna be interesting to see how a front three of Pepe, Laca, and Auba old up defensively. Gonna need them to put in a shift when we’re off the ball too otherwise we’ll get shredded on the wings. But with the ball…woooo-nelly! That is a spicey attacking lineup. In terms of out peak peak team I’d go with this: Leno Bellerin, Luiz, Holding/Papa, Tierny Torreira, Ceballos/Xhaka Pepe Ozil Auba Laca Not let me premise that with peak Mesut. Remember peak Mesut is one of the best attacking footballers in the world, especially counter-attacking. With that team we could play some… Read more »

Rich
Rich
9 months ago
Reply to  Dave M

I’m not sure anyone would question the defensive work rate of Aubameyang and Lacazette, they were relentless last season, and Aubameyang on the weekend ran Newcastle’s back 3 ragged with his off the ball movement. I can’t remember what peak Ozil plays like? It was the first half of the 2015/16 season the last time we seen anything consistently good from him. I’d be surprised if this season amounted to anything other than a battle for 4th, with a fair few bumps along the way, along with the usual competition on AFTV about who can have the biggest mental breakdown… Read more »

Anonymarse
Anonymarse
9 months ago
Reply to  Rich

He had his moments last year, eg

https://youtu.be/vVkpzsSI-TQ?t=334

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Anonymarse

Amazing how quickly people forget who flipping good he can be. He hasn’t forgotten how to play its just mental right now. Maybe he bounces back. Maybe not. If he does he’s the best attacking midfielder we have by a long way.

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  Dave M

If we can afford to, surely better to have him than not. There is NO perfect solution in midfield. On the attacking end, currently Ceballos hasn’t found his feet and much is more on promise. Mhkitaryan is hit and miss. frankly why we bought him instead of Mahrez is another question. But he does somethings good then follows up with somethings bad. Smith-Rowe again a developing player. Willock is energetic and forward thinking but still some times naive as expected. Sure we can survive without Ozil but prob on balance better to have him as a weapon than not. Trick… Read more »

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  Santori

And there is no first choice team (bar maybe the keeper, Cbacks and Granit)

Everything-else is circumstantial.

Even at fullbacks, we will rotate. Frankly AMN and Kolasinac (if kept) better as wing backs with a 3 at the back set up.

3 up top OK for some occasions but clearly in other instances 4-2-3-1 culd be better caution away.

It all depends.

Wehave the tools to be flexible not rigid in thought.

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Santori

Yeah I agree on Ozil, but we really need to find a way to get him fully engaged. Unfortunately these off-field dramas are not helping that, but that is awful stuff and he is clearly being targeted in some dark twisted stuff. Hopefully that gets sorted, he gets his head back into football and realises that he has the perfect attacking partners to exploit his skills. A focussed Ozil along with our attacking trio of Auba, Laca and Pepe and a more solid holding midfield and defensive setup and I think we can work our way into challenging for the… Read more »

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
9 months ago
Reply to  Dave M

Ozil? Torres was the best striker in the world when playing for Liverpool then he went to Chelsea then as a footballer he seemed to have disappeared off the face of the earth.

Eddie
Eddie
9 months ago

Dribble?
Sorry, Nelson isn’t really a good dribbler, not even close to how Sancho is with the ball at his feet.
I watched him play while I’m Germany, he might’ve scored a few goals but I’m yet to be impressed or see anything spectacular about him.
I’m willing to watch him play him with us so we know what he can bring, but I think honestly, the boy is over hyped by us Arsenal fans

Red-Sky
Red-Sky
9 months ago
Reply to  Eddie

Most of our youngsters are overhyped. I don’t think they are good enough (currently) for where we want to be. Which is finishing 3rd at the minimum.

Khells
Khells
9 months ago
Reply to  Eddie

You’re right.. He’s good but overhyped

AlexNuggz
AlexNuggz
9 months ago
Reply to  Eddie

Bore off you negative nancies! I’ll be happy to see our young guns prove you both wrong.

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  AlexNuggz

I don’t think they are over hyped outside the club. Some people within the club may be guilty of that but in general, they are decent prospects and very exciting (albeit in context that other clubs also have very good talents on hand) It has become the battle ground over last decade to scout and take these players early with clubs like City and Chelsea inflating that end of the market so all things considered, we have done well to be producing these players. Willock, Nelson fully deserve feature and have been buoyed by the example of Guendouzi, to some… Read more »

Twatsloch
Twatsloch
9 months ago

I thought he was excellent against Newcastle.

TorontoGunner
TorontoGunner
9 months ago

Wishing you turn into my second favourite Nelson.

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  TorontoGunner

Nelson Muntz number 1?

Cygans Parting
Cygans Parting
9 months ago
Reply to  TorontoGunner

TorontoGunner please forgive my ignorance but who is your favourite Nelson???..,. Sammy Nelson???

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Cygans Parting

Mandela is my real guess…

VAR will solve the problem
VAR will solve the problem
9 months ago
Reply to  Cygans Parting

Nelson Vivas I am guessing?

Mark Harrison
Mark Harrison
9 months ago
Reply to  TorontoGunner

Stella?

Paul Roberts
Paul Roberts
9 months ago
Reply to  TorontoGunner

Full?
🙂

Glass half Nelson
Glass half Nelson
9 months ago
Reply to  Paul Roberts

Half Nelson. Great film.

Tapps
9 months ago
Reply to  TorontoGunner

I’m going Nelson Piquet

GoonerMonkey
GoonerMonkey
9 months ago
Reply to  TorontoGunner

Admiral Horatio Nelson?

Public Elneny
Public Elneny
9 months ago

He seems to play it a little too safe whenever he plays for us. Doesn’t demand the ball too much, doesn’t take too many players on or try high risk passes. He seems content to hold his position, recycle possession and keep it simple – which is fine in a lot of situations and understandable for a young player. But when you’re facing a conservative side and not a lot has been created for the first half an hour or so, players with his talent (and now importance in the squad) should be a bit more proactive. He’s almost certainly… Read more »

myrtle
myrtle
9 months ago
Reply to  Public Elneny

He was effectively playing upfront as a second striker at Hoffenheim, hence the goals. Nearly all were scored running onto the ball in the box. Rather than cutting in from the left as he was on Sunday. I agree he seems to be playing it far too safe at the moment though. Almost like he needs a 1st team goal for some confidence.

loose_cannon
loose_cannon
9 months ago
Reply to  Public Elneny

Agree with that assessment, he looked neat and tidy without doing too much to influence the game. But I’m sure he’ll grow in confidence as the season goes on and start making more of an impact.

Public Elneny
Public Elneny
9 months ago
Reply to  loose_cannon

Yeah, agreed it’s most likely a confidence issue, he certainly has the skill and pace to scare defenders shitless as well as the intelligence to pick a good option at the end. It was like he was playing not to lose his squad place, rather than playing to grasp it. I’ve no doubt he’ll grow into the role over time, and his talent certainly merits many more opportunities. But being an unknown quantity in the first 10, 20 games can be such a powerful advantage for wingers and forwards – there are countless pacy forwards who, in hindsight, were mediocre… Read more »

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  Public Elneny

Its fine to play it safe.

The important thing is to make good decisions and protect the ball. Better than just wanton give away and being wet behind the ears.

No issue with how Nelson is playing. Its evident he has so much more maturity from the strong loan away last season.

Goonereality
Goonereality
9 months ago

I’ve a feeling that he will get chances under Emery but, as always, he’ll have to make the most of them when they do arise.

There does seem to be a different attitude from management regarding younger players and, if it continues, it should bring dividends. Very few actually make it in the end but we do need to be more careful about what to do with them than we were under the previous management team.

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  Goonereality

We have no different attitude. Wenger famously relied on younger players before but realise (belatedly) they were half baked and the rest of the league had caught up in terms of technical quality. We are in a better position to rely on youth bc of some academy changes made during Wenger’s last years plus the painful transition he embarked on 2013 adding Arteta and Metersecker to first steady the ship with experience then slowly cull and rejuvenate. I think Emery wants now to not rely on youth but have a healthy dose of younger legs to add vigour and dynamism… Read more »

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Goonereality

Seems to me the problem we had during Wenger’s waning years was as follows: (1) The stadium years: We relied too heavily on youth, but had little choice due to funding a huge new stadium internally. We had some good teams, but they got bullied a bit and we usually fell away in the crunch. Wenger did great during this era, but the pressure began to mount (not entirely fairly) due to the trophy drought. (2) The “we’re as big as any club years”: this was the years we were promised we’d be back to the top and due in… Read more »

goonero
goonero
9 months ago

I think this kid has all the tools to be a real success story here. He’s very accomplished technically but he also seems to work very hard off the ball and he seems to have a natural offensive spark to his game, the kind that tells you he’s going to score goals and grab assists because he’s just got that killer instinct that you either have or you don’t.

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  goonero

…and bearing in mind again, all these players are incredibly young. When you consider Walcott, Jack, Coquelin, Iwobi, only started to play with more effective consistency at 22/23yrs, these younger players are potentially doing it at a much younger age. Perhaps its something to do with the way we are working at the Academy, maybe better management, better loans. Maybe they are inspired by Guendouzi, AMN. BUT they are young players Willock, Nelson, Guendouzi, Martinelli even AMN. So naturally we should temper our enthusiasm a little. They are already putting in a great show IMO. I hope Saliba will prove… Read more »

Cacho
Cacho
9 months ago

Saturday can’t come fast enough. There are so many attacking options and it will be fascinating to see how Emery employs them. Fun times ahead

Forest gooner
Forest gooner
9 months ago

Good English

Paul Roberts
Paul Roberts
9 months ago

I love the fact he is happy to wait, Aubs will move aside after a couple more seasons.

On another note when all of our players are fit I think we are going to have one hell of a side this season!
COYG

Santori
Santori
9 months ago
Reply to  Paul Roberts

Nelson won’t need to wait.

With Iwobi (short sightedly) sold, we will need him now.

Auba and Laca – one may move next summer which is another reason why we bought in Pepe as insurance and to develop for up top PLUS Martinellis as a younger hedge to develop (and potentially…Nketiah who seems to have a knack for knowing where goal is)

Paul Roberts
Paul Roberts
9 months ago
Reply to  Santori

Oh ok, he’s starting every game this season is he? I didn’t know mate.

Santori
Santori
9 months ago

I would have still kept Iwobi for one season. Nelson is good but even with Pepe, would like to have 3 for depth in wide areas. Auba can play there too but one knock to one of the strikers and our options are limited. Mhkitaryan is a waning force and not entirely a good choice for wide position. Martinelli is developing, looks useful but we could do with the experience. Iwobi was just at the age he knew when to commit wide or hold deep etc. 30m is tempting money but I think we’ve again been a bit pennywise pound… Read more »

Santori
Santori
9 months ago

https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/49319480 An interesting article on BBC on MONEYBALL value of players we brought in and sold. Of course whether you fully subscribe to this American approach is another thing and there are intangibles to weigh in beyond stats. BUT as I mentioned, even on intangibles, I think we got rid of Iwobi too early. And Saliba is a risk we paid too much over for (eventually) All the cost kicked down the road is also an intrinsic danger should we again fail this season and have to be saddled with pre-set cost committed to these assets the following summer. Again… Read more »

Dave M
Dave M
9 months ago
Reply to  Santori

Those numbers are bollocks IMO. The price for Pepe compared to what the market has been dictating for such players seems a steal. Comparing him to Fekir and Ziyech? Are they really on his level? Fekir doesn’t have his pace nor finishing in the same league. Ziyech has put up some nice stats in a very weak league, I don’t know too much more about him, he sounds decent, but I can’t see him being on Pepe’s level, which I guess is why some of the world’s biggest clubs were sniffing around Pepe and not Ziyech. And from all reports… Read more »

GoonerUpNorth
GoonerUpNorth
9 months ago

Some of the shit I read on here is hilarious. It’s like most fans think they’re experts in economics/running a corporation. Back in the day it was just about watching our 11 lads try to win against another 11 lads on a Saturday afternoon. Crazy times we live in.