Prior to this pre-season Mark McGuinness didn’t have any experience of senior football, but he has progressed very well in recent months.
Having featured, and scored, for Arsenal against MK Dons in pre-season, he was sent out on loan to Ipswich Town, and, after having to wait to break into the team, he has now established himself as an important player for his temporary side.
McGuinness’ height is a useful asset and means that he towers over many of his opponents, even at senior level. His reading of the game is impressive, too, and, at the age of 19, the centre-back has time on his side to improve even further.
It is anticipated that McGuinness will spend the entire campaign at Ipswich, which should enable him to gain plenty of experience.
The youngster has also been making progress on the international front, breaking into the Republic of Ireland U21 squad. If he continues to develop at his current rate, it is certainly feasible that McGuinness could be called up by Ireland at senior level in the not too distant future.
There remains a considerable amount of uncertainty regarding his long-term future at Arsenal given that there are many centre-backs at the club but the situation can change quickly and for now McGuinness is making the most of the opportunities he has been afforded at Ipswich.