Emile Smith Rowe is Arsenal’s new number 10. Accompanying the announcement of his new contract came the change of number from last season’s 35.
The 20 year old follows in the footsteps of such luminaries as Dennis Bergkamp, Jack Wilshere, Mesut Ozil and Paul Merson.
Smith Rowe had been the subject of bids from Aston Villa this summer, but they were rejected out of hand with Mikel Arteta insisting, “Yes. He will stay here. 100%.”
So, now he inherits the creative midfield mantle and the responsibility that comes with such a number, not that it looks like it will faze him one bit.
“Everyone knows that No 10 is a big shirt and it is definitely a big position as well,” he told the official website.
“So I’m buzzing to be honest, I can’t wait to get on the pitch. It’s really special – I can’t explain the feeling when I found out. I’ve not really got the words to explain it right now!
“The legends that have played here and have worn the shirt… it’s a bit too much right now but I’m sure I will calm down after a while!
“When I was younger I used to watch Dennis Bergkamp, and when I was going through the academy Mesut Ozil was here as well and getting the opportunity to train with him and play with him as well was unbelievable.
“I just want to keep working hard and hopefully I can play like them and replicate what they’ve done.”
ESR10, Aston Villa 0.