Mauro Bandeira scored his first Premier League 2 goal last night as Arsenal U21s drew 1-1 with Crystal Palace.
It was an intense encounter between two impressive teams and the midfielder certainly seemed up for the challenge.
Bandeira’s overall performance was of a high standard as he played some slick passes and also worked hard to win the ball back.
Competition for places in midfield is intense at U21 level, with the likes of Bandeira, Matt Smith, Jack Henry-Francis, Catalin Cirjan and Bradley Ibrahim all in contention along with talented schoolboys Ethan Nwaneri and Myles Lewis-Skelly, while Ben Cottrell is stepping up his return from injury.
Bandeira seized his opportunity against Palace and will hope that it leads to further chances.
The 18-year-old is now a fully-fledged member of the U21 squad having stepped up from the U18s. Bandeira hasn’t appeared fazed by the increase in quality and is now aiming to push on even further.
Bandeira has already been involved with the first-team in a behind closed doors friendly and he has developed his game in recent years by becoming more attack-minded.
The draw against Palace saw Arsenal return to the top of Premier League 2 and Mehmet Ali’s team will now turn their attention to Sunday’s game at home to Everton.