Mikel Arteta says Arsenal have a ‘great player’ in Emile Smith Rowe but stressed the club need to be patient with him.
Coming off the bench in the 75th minute of the Gunners 3-0 win over Molde, the midfielder needed only seven minutes to make an impact, laying on an assist for Folarin Balogun to complete the scoring.
Amazingly, Smith Rowe’s cameo was his first senior appearance since he started Freddie Ljungberg’s final game in charge at Everton last December.
Following a loan spell in the Championship with Huddersfield he was tipped to challenge for a regular place this season but injuries, not for the first time, have hampered his momentum.
Facing the press after last night’s win, Arteta said: “Emile is a player with an incredible talent. He’s the got ability and the quality.
“Mentally, it is always a challenge because the demands are so high, the pressure is high to play here and you need to hit those levels to become an Arsenal player. It’s down to him as well.
“I really like him and he’s a player that if we are a little bit patient [with], we have a great player there.”
The Gunners included a total of eight Hale End graduates in their matchday squad last night; a real testament to the hard work put in by everyone who works tirelessly at the facility.
Arteta went on to talk about giving them more game time in the coming weeks. You can read those quotes here.