Saturday, March 2, 2024

Awe’s callup should inspire Arsenal’s other youngsters

Despite having only recently established himself as a regular in Arsenal’s U23 side, Zach Awe received his first senior callup for Arsenal last night.

The centre-back, who can also play in midfield, was named amongst the substitutes for the game against Wolverhampton Wanderers, and it will certainly have been a useful experience for Awe, who is regarded highly by the club.

Tall and possessing impressive technical ability, Awe, 18, has made some costly errors at times at youth level but he has performed with greater consistency of late.

Another member of the U23 squad made the trip to Molineux, with Hubert Graczyk travelling as third choice goalkeeper due to Bernd Leno being unavailable.

With Arsenal having a small first-team squad, it seems likely that further academy players will be called up for the remaining games.

It will only take one absentee from the first-team for a youth player to be drafted in, and Gabriel Martinelli’s suspension for the game against Brentford means Mikel Arteta will have to call upon at least one youngster.

As well as Awe, Charlie Patino, Mika Biereth, Omari Hutchinson, Salah-Eddine and Ryan Alebiosu (who is now on loan at Crewe Alexandra) have already been named on the bench in the Premier League this season, and others are set to follow.

Omar Rekik and Miguel Azeez, who possess experience of senior football of some description, could well be called upon at some stage, while Joel Lopez is an option at left-back.

Whether any of the youngsters get onto the pitch at all is another matter entirely but they do at least have a good chance of being involved with the first-team, demonstrating the benefit of being able to name nine substitutes.

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

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AWEsome stuff to see academy players making the bench regularly!
I mean we have 2 Hale End stars in our 1st XI: Smith Rowe and Saka, won’t be long before they are joined by more from Hale End COYG


Absolutely. Been quite impressed by Hutchinson. Bit of Nasri in his style, or maybe it’s just the way he runs/ dribbles with the ball. But I won’t hold that against him heh. Maybe also our Gnabry with the drive, running at players and trying to make things happen. Those boys need loans to grow into it. They look promising though, and the BFG and team have been pushing for more talent.


true, loans are really good for experience against more seasoned professionals
and i’ll admit i haven’t followed the academy that much, though i’ve seen a couple of hutchinson’s goals, and boy he knows how to score a good goal doesn’t he haha


I’ve watched a few under 23 games this season, and that Joel Lopez has stood out for me, putting in some solid performances.


How was this not titled ‘Awe Inspiring other youngsters’?


Hasn’t Karl Hein also been on the bench a few times? He was U23 as well, before the loan.

Nainsley Aitland Miles

Just the once in the Premier League, against Brentford on the first day of the season.

Teryima Adi

The future is bright and beautiful.


Yep Sp*rs are losing again.


What’s happened to Catalin Cirjan? He was tipped with similar potential to Flores, Patino Hutchinson, and Salah-Edine. Is he injured?

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