19 year old Folarin Balogun has been a stand-out performer at youth level for Arsenal, with an impressive goalscoring record.

However, where his future lies has been a bit of an open question for some time. This summer there were attempts by Sheffield United and Brentford to sign him which were rebuffed by the Gunners.

Last night, during the 3-0 win over Dundalk, he made his full debut for the club, and afterwards Mikel Arteta made it clear he wants the striker to stay in North London.

“He’s a player that I really like,” said the Arsenal boss. “Obviously I’ve got this situation and I believe it’s later than what I would like because I wasn’t here when everything started to develop but yes, he’s a player that I would like to give chances to.

“That’s why he was in the squad today and I showed him that yes, we count on him and we believe in him and if he wants, he’s going to have a future in the club.”

The situation Arteta mention is that the player’s contract expires in 2021, so giving him minutes and demonstrating that he’s got a chance will go some way to convincing him to sign new terms.

Balogun himself was delighted to have finally got some playing time at senior level, telling the official site, “It feels great. It’s a moment I have been waiting for a little while so to finally get it feels great.

“I can only thank Mikel and the staff for this opportunity and I look forward to doing it more often.

“It’s been tough, I’ve been at a few other clubs doing trials and stuff like that, but I’ve been working my way through the academy and I think as time has gone on I’ve become a better player.

“I think that’s shown in my performances and I think it’s good now to get the recognition that my performances deserve.”

He an exciting prospect and an interesting player, so let’s keep fingers crossed more involvement in the Europa League will let him see there’s a pathway for him at Arsenal.

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Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

Surely he could have been introduced a bit earlier with the scoreline being 3-0 against last night’s opponents? It’s not if they would injure the young bloke!

Jackstoneygunner

I don’t know he didnt look good to me in the little I saw of hm. but I guess its too short ti judge him just yet.

Man Manny

I have a gut feeling he’ll stay.
If we beat Molde next week, the group is right and truly in the bag. We can then play these fringe players in the remaining games.
A Balogun, Nketiah and Martinelli strike force can serve us for years to come.

Artetas Assistant

The best of Nigerian, Ghana and Brazilian Jollof in one serving . Sumptuous

kaius

Ahhh jollof served with feijão on the side, a mouth-watering prospect

Artetas Assistant

Mouthwatering! And all monsters 🧛🏼‍♂️

C_Otter

Perhaps with Saka sitting in a number 10 role?

Artetas Assistant

Or upfront ala Pires.
Maybe Gabi is the new Bergkamp. You need the stuff of #god in that position and Gabi is the best we have with the stuff of God there

Shool14

Even if he does leave on a free, we’re due a compensation fee. So i feel this is smart from Arsenal by involving him in the first team. This will only inceease his value

Even better if he does end up signing an extension, looks like a great future prospect

goongot

how are we due a compemsation fee if he leaves free?

Diaby's Left Peg

Players under 21? Who have been in your academy the selling club is entitled to a development compensation fee set by some independent committee.

I’m pretty sure that happened when Liverpool signed Sterling?

Joseph Kawooya

His movements in the box were quite good. Compared to Eddie, his presence is mastered in the 18yard box.
He provides limited involvement in the midfield or wings. Good at 1v1 but would rather have 1v2-3.
If he knuckles down, could evolve to the Lacazette role in the first team.

Artetas Assistant

Crazy if true

Zomodachi

His name alone is worthy of a chance at Arsenal!

Jelozine

Yeah, name means ‘War General’

Con

He has great underpinning technique, unlike Nketiah. I sincerely hope we try to cash in on Eddie and provide a pathway to the first team for this guy.

ODB

Underpinning technique?

Con

Yes

ODB

Was trying to get you to elaborate what you meant but I get it now actually.

Con

Just better technique in receiving the ball, striking the ball, getting it out from under his feet etc. Nketiah can finish but that’s about it. I’m not sure he’s an Arsenal striker, as we need someone who can link play and operate in small spaces. Although I can see Eddie scoring goals for a team that plays with a poacher, say Leicester.

Tanned arse

I’ve only ever watched clips of his goals but I’ve always been underwhelmed by anything I’ve seen. Never thought that he looks like a special kid, just stronger and more physically developed than the guys he comes up against. It’s limited stuff admittedly so probably not a good indication of much and of course everyone develops differently. Personally I don’t think there’s much to eddie’s game either but he scored loads in the youth teams too

Tanned arse

I’d also say that the player I prefer is john-jules but that’s probably more down to the type and style of player I like in that position

Biggles

He is very talented but it doesn’t appear to have been handled very well so far (shades of the apparent confusion over Saliba?). We need to get this sorted now, one way or the other, quickly.

Dee

He’s been a bit impatient to be fair. He had nketiah and john-jules ahead of him. If wants to play that badly he should have asked for a loan. Nketiah had a better goalscoring record than him at youth level yet he expects to be ahead of him in the que

Heavenly Chapecoense

Walcott had a far better goal record at youth level. It is not an indication of success in PL.

loose_cannon

If you’re saying Walcott did not succeed in the PL, what is your definition for success? Most players coming out of an academy would kill for Walcott’s career.

Drew

Walcott scored over 100 goals for Arsenal, I would say that’s pretty successful.

Artetas Assistant

I don’t think there’s any confusion with Mikels administration. Rather there is decisiveness, even an over eagerness to be Decisive. Mikel is an iron-hand, not indecisive. The first thing such a drilled , decisive , in-control guy will have decided on a long time ago is to only respect the media and use them to his own advantages. So when he doesn’t answer all of y’all’s repeat curiosities, everybody runs into a conclusion, completely guided by nothing but the effects of their own experiences on their psyche and perception of happenings. For Balogun Mikels probably painted the exact picture Folarin… Read more »

Artetas Assistant

What Ozil has done to Arsenal in the past is criminal and if people are being held to all accounts, those repeat spinal incidents deserved review . And his swagger didn’t stop there. Just be a good top football player boy. Eg Gabriel, young boy but big dog.

So As with others IMO, the Ozil situation Again completely under control

Merson’s grin

How’s this relevant to the topic?
Just stop with bringing Ozil into everything please.

Artetas Assistant

Jus above I Was making a list of things fans worry about that are actually under control .

GoonerBot

How everyone is able to determine that he has more talent compared to Nketiah after 15mins on the field is just….wow

Biggles

I don’t think it’s a question of does he has more or less “talent” than Nketiah. Clearly, Balogun has shown some real quality at the levels he’s played at so far but he needs to be given a fair chance to show what he can do at the higher level (just like Nketiah was/is). What’s the problem with that? If they’re good enough, I’d rather have both of them competing for a first team place, wouldn’t you?

GoonerBot

Agreed, I wouldn’t have a problem with both of them competing for a first team place if Balogun is good enough. However, I have a problem with suggestions (a lot on here) that Balogun is better than Nketiah. Also, being good at lower levels doesn’t necessarily guarantee success at a higher level…as a young player you really need to be exceptional to have a breakthrough….and to be honest, I just haven’t seen enough from Balogun to suggest that he is exceptional. With regards to chances, every player deserves a chance. He really needs to capitalise on every second of football… Read more »

ODB

I’m with you bro, so many people going overboard. Success in youth level doesn’t automatically mean you’re a great player. Eddie was pretty good at that level too.

santi's thigh grab

I would say Eddie is trying to break through to first team football. Eddie has lite it up at U23’s and does well in the low level Europa league games. I’m a big Eddie supporter but at some point he needs to reach these heights in the PL. He hasn’t achieved that yet, so in my mind others should also be getting the opportunity to finish out some PL games to see how they react to the game. If you have followed Balogun on the U23’s, you will know that he is a talent. His impatience could be viewed positively… Read more »

bob

Agreed mate. The amount of disrespect Eddie has been getting on here is astonishing. The kid has been fantastic for us, homegrown, top scorer U21 England, and progressing leaps and bounds as he gets performances. Aside from Auba he is arguably the best finisher in the squad. And if you look at Wrighty at his age Eddie is leagues ahead in his development. Yet I’m seeing that we should cash in on him? Ffs just because we might have another young upcoming striker, and that’s a big might as the lad has only played 15mins for us, doesn’t mean we… Read more »

GoonerBot

Also, Runnarson has to start all games from now…..Clean sheets till the end of the season

Richie

The Bal is in his court.

karl

Players that score goals as naturally as Balogun are rare. It may or may not translate to senior football, but I wouldn’t want to take the chance of letting him go to another team.

Jeremy DG

Didn’t see enough of Balagun last night but what I did see was encouraging. Hope to see more in the group stage/cup games. I wanted to reserve a word for Runarsson. Obviously he didn’t have much to do but what he did, he did well. I liked his distribution, how he came and claimed crosses and also how he was virtually playing on the half way like at times like Neuer. That takes some confidence in your first game and he doesn’t seem short of that. Good thing for a keeper.

Artetas Assistant

Love to hear that

Drew

It’s funny how Balogun is hailed as this superstar because of his record yet every belittles the fact that Eddie is now the England U21’s all time record goalscorer! It’s just weird, I seem to recall how excited everyone was when he came on and scored 2 goals against Norwich. It’s like we treat our players like iPhones, and only the next new thing will be an upgrade. There seems very little patience to allow these young talents to grow.

Lex

So true… we have a weird fan base. It’s like they want to see Eddie fails to proven or pretends another player’s better..

Richie

Yaya Balogo

Richie

Full debut???