Thursday, December 8, 2022

Joel Ideho making encouraging progress for Arsenal U21s

Competition for places out wide in Arsenal’s U21 team is fierce, as Joel Ideho knows all too well.

The 19-year-old has struggled to secure a regular starting berth, with the likes of Amario Cozier-Duberry, Charles Sagoe Jr and Kido Taylor-Hart all in contention, while Nathan Butler-Oyedeji is also capable of playing out wide.

Recently, though, Ideho appears to have taken some significant steps forward in his development.

Arsenal usually use the U21 Premier League Cup as a chance to rotate their squad, and Ideho has seized his opportunity in that competition as he scored against Swansea City before netting a superb brace against Burnley.

Ideho has been in danger of being labelled as a moments player in that he is capable of scoring some incredible goals but has found consistency in terms of overall performances difficult to come by.

Not for the first time in his youth career, Ideho scored a goal from just inside his own half in a pre-season friendly for the U21s against St Albans.

Now, the former Ajax youngster is determined to show that he can be a reliable performer.

Ideho was rewarded with a start for the U21s against Liverpool yesterday and certainly made the most of it as he scored in a 1-1 draw.

The hope now is that Ideho will be able to make a regular impact for the U21s and still maintain his penchant for producing spectacular moments.

Jeorge Bird is the author of www.arsenalyouth.wordpress.com Follow him on Twitter @jeorgebird

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Nainsley Aitland Miles

Karl Hein seems to be in an odd situation.

He wasn’t sent out on loan as Arsenal wanted him to be #3 keeper, so he trains with the first team squad, and travels with the first team squad for home and away matchdays, which then leaves him unavailable to play for the U21’s due to logistics or fixture clashes.

It seems he’s rarely actually playing any matches. Picked up two wins with Estonia last week though.

Steinn

Jeorge, are there any youth players that might play in Europa this week? With Liverpool coming up I’m guessing Arteta wants to rotate as much as possible but with ESR/El-Neny/Cedric out we are two players short for a full first-team rotation. My guess is that Gabriel and Xhaka will play alongside our bench from the weekend but do you think there’s any chance we might see Walters, Awe, Matt Smith or Cirjan?

Nainsley Aitland Miles

I don’t reckon Mikel would start an U21 defender this early in the group stage.

Smith is a good shout at #8 though, Xhaka should be rested as he played during the international break

Thierry Ennui

My own private Joel…

Mayor McCheese

I imagine the Spuds have been trying to sign Ideho for ages now. He’s one hot potato!

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