Unai Emery … listen to Freddie … you already have the young talent

There’s been a lot of talk about using Academy players to plump up the squad as we seem to have run out of money … thanks Stan for not putting your hand in your pocket to help your team!

I find it worrying that often when we talk about buying players we agonise over not disrupting the squad and yet there are legions of fans wanting to sell more than half of our current first team.

Back in 2008 we had a fabulous set of players in the Academy/Under 21’s and Arsene Wenger knew that he was going to need to use some of these players in the First Team. Anyone remember a stunning victory in the Carling Cup against Sheffield Wednesday at the Emirates Stadium. The game ended 6-0. A hattrick for Carlos Vela, a brace for Nicklas Bendtner and a goal for Jack Wilshere, making him the second youngest Arsenal scorer. It was a night of fabulous football, I was there as our boys tore into the Blades and I can tell you I was excited at the prospect of Bendtner and Vela playing together in the First Team.

I’m not sure they ever played together in the First Team, I remember that van Persie got injured and Bendtner became his replacement. But the special way that they had played together that night was never seen again.

Last season we witnessed another night similar to that one in 2008 when several young guns lines up against Vorskla away in the Europa league in November.


We won the game 3-0 with goals from Emile Smith-Rowe, Ramsey and Joe Willock. Eddie Nketiah also started the game. In the second half more youngsters were given a chance of game time with Medley, Saka and Charlie Gilmour replacing Holding, Ramsey and Guendouzi. It was a fabulous display, the young guns knew how to play together and it showed on the pitch. We saw some of them individually later on in the season but not in numbers. They’re used to playing together, they know how to read each other, I feel we need to use them as a group.

What I’m trying to say is that they have to be given a chance to play regularly if we are going to reap the rewards of the fact that they’ve been playing together since they were tiny tots.

Arsene Wenger wasn’t brave enough to do this consistently but maybe Freddie Ljungberg will be and Unai Emery will listen to him. I hope so.



50 Responses to Unai Emery … listen to Freddie … you already have the young talent

  1. RC78 says:

    – Martinez, Bellerin, Holding, Chambers, AMN, Iwobi are first squad players
    – Iliev, Bielik, Willock, RN, Saka, ESR and Nketiah won’t be too far off the first squad either

    So it s not too bad and I hope that the second list of players get some playing time in both Cup games and EPl.

    That said, there are some key positions that require confirmed competent players such as CB and DM so I hope we recruit very good player for these positions.

  2. RC78 says:

    By the way – do you feel that Wilshere was the best talent that we produced in the last few years?

  3. Els says:

    I’d love to see that. Let’s develop some partnerships across the pitch and make the most of the number of minutes these lads have played together.

    However, I’d still get rid of some high earners but make sure we have experience around them. That’s basically what I think is needed.

    RC78 I agree, we can see that there has been a slow build up to this project youth and we already have some players that have made their name here.

    Yes to Jack being a little more special than any other graduate I’ve seen.

  4. RC78 says:

    Els – I agree in terms of partnerships:
    – > I think that Chambers, Bielik, Douzi and Willock should be given time together in midield.
    -> RN, ESR, Saka and Nketiah up front

    Let us see. As for Jacko, what a waste of talent due to injuries.

  5. RC78 says:

    Peaches – another superb post

  6. RC78 says:

    Psg may offload Neymar to Barcelona in the end for 130 Mln EUR plus Semedo, Arthur or Vidal and Malcolm.

    Areola – Semedo, T. Silva, Marquinhos, Guerreiro – Verratti, Milinko Savic, Herrera – Sarabia – Mbappe, Cavani

    Trapp – Meunier, Kehrer, Kimpembe, Bernat -Vidal, Paredes – Malcolm, Draxler, Di Maria – Choupo

  7. Sue says:

    36 days until the league starts (38 until we play on the Sunday) having no Arsenal to watch, no Soccer Saturday, no Soccer AM is beginning to really grate on me now!!
    So Saturday is the start of our preseason (hallelujah!!) Then stateside… where we play against some great opposition…. boy, I’ve really missed blogging on match days!!!
    Lots of names being thrown around, a few cheeky bids… I’m beginning to think there’s much more in our war chest than meets the eye (enough for Wilf 😂)
    My excitement is building by the day, as well as my expectation!! To see our fellas in that new kit.. dayum 🥰🥰 COYG

  8. Els says:


    I’d love to see a midfield partnership of Bielik and Maitland Niles. That seems like it could be a good balance.

  9. VP of Oz says:

    Great post Peaches, thank you.

    No-one on here commented on the teacup gesture by the yanks.
    Personally Nev should’nt be trying to double dip with the women.
    I’m supporting the oranges in the Final

    I agree with most –
    Keep Ozil
    Promote the youth
    Emery I thought got worse as the season progressed and fell in a heap. 1 win from finishing in top 4 & CL, and 1 win from finishing with a european trophy. But I’m up for what he can do in his second season (althought wouldve loved Rafa).
    I think Holding & the greek defenders will have a great season in 19/20 and goals conceded will be halved.
    & I love our strikers Laca and Pea.

    I agree with Sue, cant wait for the start of the season.
    I miss Eddie.
    Nice to see jjgsol last comment +1 and hope to see more.

    Thank you Rasp and Peaches.

  10. VP of OZ
    I don’t think anyone here was too fussed about the teacup thing and saw it for what it was, just a bit of a wind up, unless you’re Piers Morgan of course, who thought it was a declaration of war.
    I’ve seen comments elsewhere saying that they think Neville is a bit too touchy feely with the women. Personally I agree and think he needn’t do more than a hand shake.
    The squad reports back for pre season training tomorrow, so let’s see how things progress.

  11. Els says:

    I don’t think Emery got worse as the season went on. I think they were burnt out. Emery’s intense training sessions were too much of a culture shock for a lot of players used to a more creative style of play.

    I think a lot of players had nothing left to give.

    Another season and pre-season in particular will help with that. Also a lot of young legs. Another reason why Emery is a good fit.

  12. RC78 says:

    I think that if PN is too tactile, the team will complain. I think he should stay on and see if he can bring you to European glory. The US got lucky twice so I think Netherlands has a chance.

    Pre season starts. No movements really in or out of the squad. I hope that by 20 July, we would have addressed major areas.

  13. Els says:

    Talk of Monreal extending. Nice!!

    I’d completely bought into the fact he’d be moved on. I can count on one hand the number of bad games he’s had.

  14. Rasp says:

    Thanks peaches, a great continuation to yesterday’s post.

    I know why you put a pic of Carlos Vela in there 🙂

    We should get a chance to see which of the young guns are being considered in the game against Boreham Wood on Saturday.

    Can anyone going take some notes on Martinelli if he’s in the side. He couldn’t possibly (at the age of just 18) be considered as a replacement for either Laca or Auba surely … could he?

    More likely he’s one for the future but also insurance in case one of the top two are sacrificed. Hopefully not. We scored enough last season, we just need to concede fewer.

  15. RC78 says:

    I d be happy to sell Monreal. We don’t need him unless we move Kola up the pitch and recruit Tierney

  16. GoonerB says:

    Thanks Peaches, and also a great post yesterday by Maxwell that I wasn’t around to comment on.

    I am all for the project youth being pushed into the first team this season as long as we balance it out with key experienced players and leaders.

    Really the recent posts kind of gel together in a “bigger picture” way about where we are and how we should progress.

    The debate about Emery is almost identical in an inverse way to the debate about Arsene in his final few seasons. Some who have decided that Emery isn’t right and are counterbalanced by those that either feels he is or at least deserves more time to show us.

    I am not certain about Emery but feel he deserves more time. For the record I felt Arteta was the right fit. Literally every potential manager you looked at had positives and negatives.

    The only negative on Arteta was no experience as a number 1, admittedly potentially a big negative, but others have proven in the past that this doesn’t mean you can’t succeed at a big club on your first go. In all other senses he ticked the boxes for me, better than some of the more experienced options even, and as a team going through a transitional phase I felt we should have been brave in taking a chance.

    Having the right manager at the right time can affect a teams fortune over a long period. We certainly got the right one in 1997 but by 2013-2014 I don’t think Arsene was still right for us as we entered a new period.

    The club has been on the slide for a good few years now, this didn’t start with Emery, but whatever our individual feelings about the the last manager and the current one, it is hard to escape the feeling that the owner and the board have been more influential in our slip from grace, as the Swiss Rambler report highlights in a rather depressing way.

    I think if anything the owner needs the focus of attention this year as well as Emery. Really he should have this one season to prove he can turn this around, because a lot of this mess is down to his stewardship. If he can’t then I think it could turn ugly in a Liverpool under Hicks / Gillet way, and in reality if Silent Stan is treating the club and fan base with disdain then roll on and let it happen.

    We can’t expect a full turn around in one season, but I think halting the slide and showing some shoots of recovery should be expected at the least.

  17. RC78 says:

    Martinelli can only be seen as a back up forward – he ll pbbly share time with Nketiah as a replacement

  18. RC78 says:

    Give him Bailly, Banega, Zaha and let s c what he does but don’t expect miracles

  19. Els says:

    Rasp – for me Martinelli could be a back up only. Surely? The one thing we had was the strikers. I’m hoping it’s going to mean a good loan deal for Nketiah. Hopefully to a decent german team. Although he’s said in the media he wants to stay.

  20. fred1266 says:

    No bellerin RC78

  21. fred1266 says:

    Are u a psg fan Rc78

  22. Rasp says:

    Hi Els … I share your hope, but you never know. If Martinelli goes above Eddie in the pecking order, I can see Eddie wanting to leave. Hopefully there is a bigger picture to unfold and we just can’t see it yet.

  23. Els says:

    Genuine question. If Martinelli stays and Ediie goes on loan does that really mean Martinelli is above him in the pecking order?

  24. Els says:

    I’m with Self Righteous, it’s all just a storm in a tea cup. If people can make trouble out of goal celebrations they will.

    Professional trolls, everywhere.

  25. Rasp says:

    Els @ 4:40 … I have no idea, but since Eddie has said he wants to stay and fight for his place, I would assume he’d see it as a slap in the face.

  26. GoonerB says:

    Martinelli might become a striker option eventually but I thought right now he was more an attacking wide player / wing forward which means he shouldn’t immediately be in competition with Eddie.

  27. Rasp says:

    Good point GB. We are still looking at experienced ready-made wide players so probably EN and GM are destined to be first choice back-up/bench players

  28. Sue says:

    Says online (Jeorge Bird’s Arsenal youth) that Martinelli won’t be in the squad on Saturday.. I have to admit, some of the names mentioned I’m not familiar with! 🤪

  29. Rasp says:

    I guess he’s only been in the country a few days Sue, so maybe expecting a bit much to put him under the spotlight this early.

  30. fred1266 says:

    Yea I miss Eddie to

  31. fred1266 says:

    And chas and ants I also miss

  32. fred1266 says:

    Wait we have a game Saturday sweet,

  33. fred1266 says:

    rc78 u heard any further news on Tierney, ho the transfer progressing

  34. RA says:

    I enjoyed the Post, thank you, Peaches, and it generated some interesting comments.

    In the past I think the youth team hopefuls were up against the concerns of the management who did not want to risk missing out on the annual qualifying target of finishing in the top 4, as the kids, however good they were, were seen as likely to make mistakes early in their careers, and cost Arsenal the money that CL qualification brought.

    It is ironic that eventually that is what happened, but the kids were not responsible.

    As a new manager, I suppose that is what concerned Emery, and is the reason that youth players who made the squad/team only warmed the bench, or got a few minutes playing time.

    Hw would not be alone in thinking too many (any?) youth players could not help the team — what was that I heard an ex-Pool player say about ManUtd? “you won’t win anything with kids”

    Got that wrong, didn’t he?

    Our best kids will go {Germany?] if they do not get a chance, so let’s hope they do get games next season – for their benefit, and ours.

  35. Sue says:

    Yep, 3pm on Saturday, Fred! Beautiful!!

    Rasp… yeah I see what you mean, although I’m a lil disappointed, as if he’s supposedly the new Ronaldo, surely he’d hit the ground running & score at least 3 😜

  36. Rasp says:

    Hi Redders, I agree younger players are more prone to errors, but maybe more likely to bring energy and commitment. I guess the old saying that ‘if you’re good enough you’re old enough’ sums up my feelings. Rooney was good enough at 17 … as was Cesc. We do have quality youngsters coming through, UE will decide when they’re ready I guess. I’d take an 18 year old Tony Adams over at least one of our CBs.

  37. RA says:

    Totally agree, Rasper!!

  38. RA says:

    I see Ospina has gone at last. The first of the many?

  39. fred1266 says:

    Ospina went since before the copa America started didn’t realize much people didn’t know

  40. RC78 says:

    Fred – arsenal preparing a second bid for Tierney at 25 Mln pounds. Am a Psg fan indeed, I grew up in front of the training camp.

    Martinelli plays forward so I think RN, Martinelli and Nketiah will fight for playing time although not playing exact same positions

  41. jjgsol says:

    Does not Martinelli need a work permit before he can play?

    He is not an EU citizen and has not played any internationals, so I do not think we will see him that so9on.

  42. GoonerB says:

    Think Martinelli has an Italian passport. Seems quite a few of the South Americans have this but maybe there is a clue in his surname which sounds more Italian than Portuguese.

  43. RC78 says:

    Saint Etienne agree 26 mln fee for Saliba as long as he is loaned back to them.
    Monreal signs 1 year extension with possibility to extend a further year.
    Arsenal preparing second bid for Tierney close to 25 Mln pounds, may loan them a player too.

  44. RC78 says:

    Andersen, the Danish rock from Sampdoria goes to Lyon for 30 Mln EUR. Kos is unlikely to go there then and we won’t get Andersen.

    If we prolonged Monreal (why oh why), we ll keep him and allow Kos to go. Maybe we will also let Mavro on loan so we can buy a CB… Let s c

  45. GoonerB says:

    Today’s rumours are Alderweireld, who doesn’t want to uproot from London, and has a £25m release fee that we would look to pay over the next year. While I am thinking Alderweireld and Tierney, oooh yes please this one smacks of BS.

    Firstly Totts will no way play ball with us and allow us to spread payments.

    Secondly we are not currently at a higher level than Totts and not really indicating we have the ambition to be so in the immediate future.

    Thirdly £25m is a steal for a quality defender like him so I very much doubt we will be the only interested big club, and those others are likely going to spend more on their squad to win stuff and will give him bigger wages.

  46. Rasp says:

    Morning all …

    …. New post ….

  47. fred1266 says:

    Ok rc78, do you still live in France, and is ash ticket hard to get am not a fan but I support France since my own country not much of a football nation and I do joke mbappe so wouldn’t mind seeing him play

  48. fred1266 says:

    Can we loan them mustafi, xhaka guendouzi and mesut

  49. fred1266 says:

    If is one play I wouldn’t want at my club is alderweireld he is such a Judas, despicable human being

  50. We can’t really on young players in this league today please font waste your time

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