Olayinka gets off to encouraging start on loan at Northampton

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James Olayinka joins Northampton Town on loan

Arsenal youngster James Olayinka joined Northampton Town on loan this week, with the move coming rather out of the blue.

It was initially anticipated that Olayinka would continue to play for the U23s for the remainder of this season before potentially heading out on loan next campaign, but it has instead happened rather sooner, even though players who are older than him, such as Robbie Burton, haven’t been loaned out yet.

Olayinka impressed while playing for Arsenal U21s against Northampton in the EFL Trophy, which certainly played a part in the League Two side making an approach for him.

The midfielder was shown straight into action for Northampton just a day after joining and played the entirety of the 3-0 victory at home to Scunthorpe United.

Olayinka caught the eye with his passing and impressed to such an extent that he was named man of the match, which isn’t a bad achievement to mark his first official senior appearance.

Northampton face Macclesfield away this weekend, with Olayinka eager to gain further game time.

There have been some suggestions that the 19-year-old should be playing at a higher level than League Two, but this loan spell will provide him with an introduction to the senior game and could lead to a spell in a higher division next season.

Jeorge Bird is the author of www.arsenalyouth.wordpress.com Follow him on Twitter @jeorgebird

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AmericanGooner
AmericanGooner
2 months ago

Very encouraging that he started playing a day after joining, not getting to learn the full system just yet. It speaks of the natural talent he must possess knowing that he not only started under those conditions, but he also had a commanding eniugh performance to pick up man of the match.

Keep on going, James!

Goo-nerd
Goo-nerd
2 months ago

Great to see green shoots coming up through the Academy.

The future is bright, esp. when you have teenagers incl. Martinelli, Saka, Willock and Guendouzi lighting up Bournemouth. Saliba to join next season. Nketiah is only 20.

You love to see it.

Mesut O’Neill
Mesut O’Neill
2 months ago
Reply to  Goo-nerd

Being pedantic but Willock is 20 & Guendou will be 21 in two months.

Tim
Tim
2 months ago

With such a promising crop of youngsters coming through the academy, the slightly less exciting talents, like Robbie Burton and Olayinka, might not get much attention. But ultimately even if we eventually sell them to League 1/Championship sides, thats £500k – 3 mil that will cover academy costs and keep the ball rolling.

Very valuable experience dominating a professional mens game, even if it is League 2!

Cmdn
Cmdn
2 months ago

I looked his stat and he had pass succession 52%… then i looked at Northamptons and it was 53%. One of their defender is at 60%, other at 39%. Must be fun league.

Daniel
Daniel
2 months ago

I feel like lower league loans can be a good experience for players from premier League academies, shows them a different side of the game and how Lucky they are with regards to facilities etc, and playing adult football against men is always gonna be more useful than age group football

Michael Bolton Wanderers
Michael Bolton Wanderers
2 months ago
Reply to  Daniel

Gets them out of the comfort zone

Djgooner
Djgooner
2 months ago

Northampton play incredibly direct football, and the manager accepts nothing less than 100% physicality and commitment. Will be great for James to experience men’s football, although I’m not convinced he’ll improve his passing stats much

Vonnie
Vonnie
2 months ago

He got kicked and ended up hobbling, I’m not
sure what use getting smashed up playing route
one football is going to be for his career. He won the man of the match and is now out injured.