Monday, February 26, 2024

Arsenal sign youngster Akinola for under-23s

Writing for The Athletic (£), James/@Gunnerblog has confirmed that Arsenal have signed midfielder Tim Akinola following his release from Huddersfield Town last month.

Akinola moved to the Terriers from Lincoln City in June last year and was soon joined by his former boss, Danny Cowley, who took over the reins at the John Smith’s Stadium a couple of months later.

Despite being familiar to his manager he didn’t break into the senior team and even spent time out on loan at non-league outfit Brighouse Town F.C. At the end of his one-year contract, Huddersfield opted not to trigger their option of an extension.

So how did he end up at Arsenal? Good question.

James writes that the Gunners’ video analysis team were impressed by the youngster’s underlying metrics and that Per Mertesacker and Lee Herron, the head of our talent ID department, decided he was worth a punt without requesting a trial.

It’s a pretty remarkable change in fortune for Akinola who’ll now offer cover for the under-23 midfielders who are heading out on loan for the year. In recent days, Matt Smith and Zak Swanson have joined Swindon and MVV Maastricht respectively and Ben Sheaf is tipped to join Coventry City.

James says the deal is part of a new focus on domestic recruitment with English clubs set to lose the ability to sign European talents between 16-18 when the country leaves the EU on 31 December.

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Johnny 4 Hats

Is it also true that Kia Joorabchian has immediately taken him under his wing and negotiated a speed boat and tenure for the young lad?


Mr Cynical. A pedalo surely.

Gooney Tunes

Tonka Truck?


I know videos make everyone look good, but did anyone else see shades of Diaby? Good luck to the lad!


Haven’t viewed the video….. but devastated to hear about this young lad’s injury laden career – such promise too.


Should have had a trial instead of medical.

Such misfortune


When the talk about the scouts & redundancies was posted, i could see lots of comments in few minutes, now that we signed someone using video analysis n data/stat to sign someone the comment section is dry, are the scouts suppose to be signing already known players or player like this that no one has heard of nor had interest in prior to the signing

Bai Blagoi

I can only agree with our video analysis department – Akinola was one of the best gems I found in my FM2019 experience.


Scouting Network OUT
Football Manager IN


Kenny Powers as Head of Recruitment

Merlin’s Panini

The David Moyes approach.

Sign Da Ting

I think our head of talent ID plays FM, and our stats/metrics analysis tool is FM.


Bai Blagoi

It’s the first question at the job interview


“James says the deal is part of a new focus on domestic recruitment with English clubs set to lose the ability to sign European talents between 16-18 when the country leaves the EU on 31 December.”

If we cants sign those players anymore, what would the scouts be doing, will they be scouting established players, arsenal letting go of them might actually have been the righy decision.

fingers crossed till we actually see the outcome in few years time, thats when i will be able to pass my judgement, in few years if the case turns out good or bad

Spanish Gooner

You can’t say that around here! A recent Athletic article also reported that Arsenal has roughly twice as many staff numbers as Manchester City, and Misltat also talked about wanting to “streamline” scouting at the club when he arrived. Maybe, harsh as it may be, the redundancies were necessary as part of becoming a better run club?


There is of course the possibility that the roles were truly not required any more – leaving the EU will certainly change our recruitment, and every other UK based team. As well as this we may have had a lopsided staffing structure there. But regardless of that the thing that doesn’t sit right, for me anyway, was that Covid was used as the reason for it, and people losing their jobs in the middle of this crisis.

The Swede

The scouts focused on the UK has been axed aswell. So no, you cant blame this on Brexit.


I’m not ‘blaming’ it on Brexit, more that teams will be looking at things like their scouting etc. generally because of the impact of leaving the EU. My point is that, as far as I can tell from the limited information made available to us, it seems as though these changes have been made for reasons other than Covid (whether it be leaving the EU, streamlining, cost cutting, whatever it may be), but Covid has been used as the reason, and that feels like a cheap shot. Plus the moral question of dismissing staff in this situation leaves a sour… Read more »


Watched a compilation of his tackling and skills and i love what i see, he can tackle, break up play, dribble, pick a pass, am sure he can run also, did Huddersfield let him go or he refused to sign an extension, he looks decent and can develop into a midfield General with the right coaching and in the right environment coupled with his owm determination to succeed


Our new Song! And I like it 🙂

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Is he a doozy one with some disciplinary issues? His coach in two different clubs released him and he still has enough quality for a much bigger club.

Spanish Gooner

Maybe that’s why they released him? He’s too ambitious and wants to keep moving up? It seems strange to sign an 18 year old on a 12 month contract unless he refuses to sign anything longer

Cygans Parting

Looks better than Thomas Partey from the you tube videos I’ve just extensively researched!!! He certainly likes a tackle which is a very good thing.

Seriously though Tim welcome to The Arsenal sir??⚽⚽⚽

Xhaka Demus, no Pliers

His enthusiasm for slide tackles and ability to time them (the ones on show at least) are refreshing! Great chance to prove himself with us or at least improve himself before whatever’s next.

Merlin’s Panini

Yes those tackles are exceptionally timed and he comes away with the ball cleanly but would he get away with tackling from behind like that in the Premier League? I’m not sure. The way refs jump to dish out a red with that kind of challenge (particularly when it’s us) would be a worry.


Any news about Arsenal lawyers contacing you to stop your shit? I’m serious btw. I knew some people would be spanked hard when yelling about corruption at Arsenal.


Plenty of news outlets have taken up the story. Who has been “spanked hard”? I haven’t read of anyone receiving even a light smack so far.


Man, these internets is unstable…

Inspector norse

Brutal tackling, i like that.

Crash Fistfight

I thought Huddersfield were abandoning their youth development programme because all the best players get snapped up by the top clubs (seeing as how lots of places are within 90 minutes of Huddersfield)?

Was he signed as a squad player and released because he wasn’t likely to break through any time soon, or do they actually have an u23 side he could be playing for?

Dave cee

Impressive little highlights reel. Looks like Essien, fingers crossed lol.
Low risk signing, let’s hope he does well.

Merlin’s Panini

Kid’s got skills. Good luck to him. The step up is massive so the hard work starts here.


Thomas Partey wears Tim Akinola pyjamas.


Our academy is getting stronger with these signings

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