Arsenal Youth preview – U23s face tough test against Derby


After a short break, Arsenal U23s are back in action tonight when they host Premier League 2 leaders Derby County.

Steve Bould’s side can, temporarily at least, go top of the table with a victory, but they know that they will face a tough task against a Derby side that have been hugely impressive of late.

It will be intriguing to see who is involved for Arsenal as some key members of the side could be called upon for the FA Cup clash against Leeds United on Monday.

There are also some injury concerns, with winger Trae Coyle doubtful, while right-back Zak Swanson may not be ready to feature.

One player who should be involved is Matt Smith, with the midfielder having caught the eye this season with some encouraging performances in midfield.

Smith has been training with the first-team frequently of late and it appears likely that he will be involved with the senior squad in some capacity next season.

His immediate focus will be to help the U23s regain the title, and tonight’s game could be hugely important in that battle.

Jahmal Hector-Ingram, who was previously at West Ham United, has impressed for Derby this season and the forward is likely to cause plenty of problems for the Arsenal defence tonight.

Given the quality that both sides possess, it should be an entertaining encounter at Meadow Park.

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










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Hi Jeorge, thanks for the update. Do you k ow if Tolaji Bola is playing for the U23s, or is he likely to feature in the FA Cup match, especially with Kolasinac and Tierney injured (and Saka feeling under the weather)?


He’s captain today.