Thursday, September 28, 2023

Concern grows over Miguel Azeez’s Portsmouth loan

When Miguel Azeez’s loan switch to Portsmouth was announced it was anticipated that it could be a hugely beneficial move for the highly-rated midfielder.

So far, however, Azeez’s first experience of life away from Arsenal has been a rather frustrating one.

Azeez played 59 minutes in Portsmouth’s 2-1 defeat to Cambridge United in September and hasn’t featured since. He was unavailable for a couple of games but has been an unused substitute for the last four matches in a row.

One reason behind Azeez’s lack of game time may be the fact that the defensive side of his game requires improvement as he still has a tendency to squander possession in dangerous areas.

However, Portsmouth must surely have been aware of this flaw in Azeez’s game when they signed him, and it is difficult to expect him to improve significantly in that regard without playing.

There is a lot to like about Azeez’s playing style, such as his passing, dribbling and his ability to find the net in spectacular fashion. It is clear, though, that the 19-year-old still has a lot of work to do if he is to succeed at the highest level.

Arsenal will undoubtedly be monitoring Azeez’s situation closely and if this problem persists then it seems likely that he could be recalled in January. If that was to be the case then it wouldn’t have been an entirely wasted experience as he will have experienced different methods of training and seen the pressure of League One football.

It is vital that Azeez is playing regularly in the second half of the season. Perhaps a loan to a foreign club could be beneficial but it is clear that something needs to change to accelerate Azeez’s development and get the best out of him.

Jeorge Bird is the author of Follow him on Twitter @jeorgebird

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Gotta say before the season started I liked the idea of him being our 4th CM behind Partey, Xhaka’s replacement and Lokonga, but I’m clueless and with Azeez struggling at Portsmouth I guess it shows.

I’m happy to see AMN as our 4th choice rather than Elneny, especially as we’ve been playing with a single pivot. Farewell to Elneny and take your time, Azeez, I guess. Hope we’ll play Sambi over Xhaka even when the latter is back from injury, I really enjoy Sambi


The loanee we should be paying more attention to now is Dinos Mavropanos. I’ve seen stats that make him one of the leading center-backs in Germany right now. I’ve also read that we’re destined to lose him based on his loan contract with Stutgart F.C.. If so, Arsenal seems to have blown this one badly. A new Gnarby?

The Beast

Are we blowing it badly if we already have better playing in his position?

No one wants to lose a good player but who out of the current CB pairing would you drop to play him? The back 5 (6 with Nuno) are gelling and the last thing I’d want to do is mess with that.


Totally agree, but are you satisfied with our defensive squad players? Who fills in if White or Gabriel get hurt or suspended? Mavropanos being of the same age range would add healthy competition for these positions too. Also, he didn’t cost us much to get.

Santi’s Thigh Grab

It’s Gnabry and he chose to leave by not signing a contract extension.

Dino had only played a couple of games for us because he was always injured. We chose to sell him because he was always injured and couldn’t rely upon him. Because of the COVID market a loan with an obligation to by was the best we could do.

So nothing at all like Gnabry.


Perhaps then we didn’t offer Gnarby enough for the contract extension? That’s where we could have been at fault. In Dino’s case it’s the obligation in his loan to buy that I find annoying, we could at least have avoided that clause. Now it looks like he’s developing into a very solid defender and we can’t, as far as I can tell, bring him back.


It’s a major flaw and he’ll need to be in a team with a solid midfield and defence to develop. Fingers crossed Pompey form improves so the manager can trust him a bit more.


Call back, send to another club. He is facing competition from more experienced players. Portsmouth is packed at his position with 4+ players. Sending him there is an obvious mistake.


Spot on.

Going abroad would help him gain confidence and be outside his comfort zone in a controlled environment. League one isn’t that controlled! Tough old league and anyone can beat anyone


Having watched the absolutely dire Crewe-Doncaster game last night, I’m not sure I would agree with the final few words. Both teams heading downwards, disorganised, and unable to string passes together, let alone produce decent chances on goal.


The loan system for youth players needs more flexibility….if they don’t play with their loan club, come back and find another club, separate to the usual transfer windows….what a fucking waste of time 🙄


Needs relaxing slightly but still rulings to stop teams abusing it

Cranky Colin

Pogba is the same

Teryima Adi

The thing that needs to change is for Azeez to up his game. This sounds like the case of Nketiah at Leeds. We trust the lad would come good anyway.


I really think the club should stop taking kids on loan in England. With German & Dutch clubs a better league for them. Also, blaming Portsmouth for a player’s inability to adapt is disappointing and Arsenal should take notice of this flaw in his game. His inability to adapt his playing style to suit a particular system.


Thanks for that Jeorge and yeah I’m sure that Portsmouth were well aware of his defensive deficiencies before they took him on loan and thought that they could work on them and improve him as a player in that regard. Unfortunately either their coaching isn’t working or the player isn’t working hard enough, I guess we’ll know in a couple of months when the transfer window opens?


“It is difficult to expect him to improve significantly without playing…”

Bring him back in January and find a club that will play him.


Same reason Balogun is kept on the bench ahead of Nketiah?

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