Aneke extends Crewe spell but other loanees leave much to be desired

It was announced today that, as had been expected, Arsenal midfielder Chuks Aneke has extended his loan spell with League One side Crewe Alexandra by a further month, in a deal which will run until January 21st.

Aneke has established himself well under Steve Davis, turning in several impressive performances and scoring four goals in 19 appearances, in stark contrast to his rather feeble displays during stints with Preston North End and Stevenage last season.

Whilst Aneke has enjoyed much success out on loan this season, the same cannot be said for many of his Arsenal team-mates currently on temporary transfers, with the majority of Arsenal youngsters struggling to establish themselves at their temporary clubs. Philip Roberts has done well in Scotland with Inverness Caledonian Thistle, racking up 13 appearances, but others, such as Conor Henderson and Daniel Boateng, who are with Coventry City and Oxford United respectively, have barely featured, owing largely to injury problems.

Craig Eastmond and Sanchez Watt have also struggled in that regard, with serious injuries cutting short their spells with Colchester United. Both players had impressed in League One prior to suffering hefty blows but have since returned to London Colney for treatment and are unlikely to extend their deals with Colchester in the New Year.

Conor Henderson has featured just twice for Coventry since joining them on loan nearly three months ago.

Conor Henderson has featured just twice for Coventry since joining them on loan nearly three months ago.

Perhaps the most frustrating loan spell as far as Arsenal are concerned, both in terms of game time and player performance, has been Benik Afobe’s spell with Bolton Wanderers in the Championship. Afobe has largely struggled to replicate the form he showed whilst with Huddersfield Town two seasons ago, finding the net just twice and being limited to only five starts. Despite this, he is still likely to remain at the Reebok Stadium until the end of the season.

Ryo has similarly struggled to catch the eye at Wigan Athletic, making just six appearances (only one of which was a start) for Roberto Martinez’s side. The Japanese international hasn’t earned a call-up for several weeks owing to injury problems, but, like Afobe, is unlikely to be recalled.

Wellington and Samuel Galindo, meanwhile, continue to be marooned in Spain and, whilst the Brazilian in particular has shown some fleeting promise, it will probably some time before we see them in an Arsenal shirt, if at all. Joel Campbell and Ju-Young Park have fared considerably better in La Liga, although Campbell still needs to develop more consistency in his game, whilst Denilson has been a regular for Sao Paulo and Nicklas Bendtner, largely isolated from the Juventus set-up, will miss at least three months through injury.

Emmanuel Frimpong has made three starts for Charlton Athletic as he continues his rehabilitation from injury, and could see his deal at the Championship club, which expires on New Year’s Day, extended for a further month.

By that point, the loan transfer window will have re-opened and, with Arsenal out of the Captial One Cup, several further young Gunners are likely to head out on loan at that point. Nico Yennaris, Ignasi Miquel, Sead Hajrovic, Jernade Meade, Martin Angha, Damian Martinez and Samir Bihmoutine are amongst those who could be lent out to gain further experience.



  1. Can we recall Afobe and Ryo, almost like exactly what we need, at least they’ll be training with the first team. Both players would provide genuine competition and back up to the current squad.

    Glad to hear Aneke is pushing on, we saw with Nick Powell last year that they love to develop those types of players in midfield.

    It’s an absolute shame about Galindo, Wellington, Henderson Watt and Eastmond not to mention Campbell, who had a pretty decent loan spell at Lorient last year.

    Is it feasible to keep so many players on the books? Bendtner hasn’t looked the same player in months. Denilson on the other hand has been an ever present!

    George do you know if Arsenal contribute to these players wages whilst they’re on loan?

    1. Bendtner made such a bad move going to sunderland. he was actually a fairly decent player at arsenal 45 goals in 79 starts is a good return yet he thought the grass was greener elsewhere. to be fair i would have had bendtner on the bench over chamakh or park had he not been such a w@nker and mouthed off. The problem for us now is his stock is plummeting fast and im certain he will be returned soon as juventus will cut a deal over his salary.

  2. I hope that at least one of the Aneke, Afobe, Henderson will make it to the first team. There is going to be an overhaul so they have a chance to make it. I fear that Henderson can be the next Mark Randall. Talented but it didnt work out.

    1. Need to get boys out on loan earlier and not let them rot in “reserve” / U21 dead football. Clubs elsewhere send players out early to gain first team experience yet ours are wrapped in cotton wool and left at home. Only way we can really gauge players is to throw them into the lions den and let them develop a winning mentality. Not many clubs have the facilities we do and players need to realise how lucky they are.

  3. feeble displays during stints with Preston North End and Stevenage last season –
    maybe more care should be taken to put our players with football playing clubs.
    However signed off the earlier loans clearly has no interest in his development. Also
    how many players on loan now are getting ANY playing time. Someones not doing their job.

    1. Loan system does not work because the club does not have anyone pushing or building relationships with clubs to take our boys on

  4. The club needs to work harder and working in partnering with clubs to get our boys out on loan. Chelsea and Spurs have a dedicated body whose role is to ensure their players are loaned out to clubs in championship and gaining valuable experience.
    A club like Watford who are next door would be a no brainer but the club are of teh opinion that anyone wanting an arsenal player should come and beg. In the current market lower league clubs can pick and choose and when our 2 london rivals are throwing players at them why should they come to arsenal and beg. U21’s fixture finished and West Ham loaned out half the team next day, why didn’t we do the same.
    We want our boys in the championship or league 1 getting first team football and not being left to rot in an uncompetitive U21’s league.
    The club needs a dediacted loan officer whose role is to promote and push our boys out to clubs where they can gain first team football experience and come back to our first team.

  5. I agree with Jom that loans to the Bundesliga could work out very well. A lot of the teams there like to play open passing Football. I know its a stereotype but German coaches could instill an added work rate into the lads going over there. They will be playing in massive stadiums with incredible atmospheres so will be able to adapt to that.

    It will also take the players out of their comfort zones and encourage them to adapt to new challenges. Teams like Monchengladbach could be good loan partners. I know we sold Nordtveit to them and he has done well, so there may already be a relationship there.

    This will only be an option for the players who the coaching staff have a genuine belief could make it here as it is a very difficult league to play in with a lot of good teams. Miquel, Yennaris, Akpom (in a season or two), Olsson and Toral seem like the most obvious candidates.

    I think Gnabry and Eisfeld could both benefit from a loan with a PL team, half a season at another club now could do them wonders for next year.

  6. It is all well and good to advise the club to loan out players to the Bundesliga, Ligue 1, or la Liga but it’s not like Germany, France, and Spain are in desperate need of British youth to fill up their 25-man squads. Overall, the quality of their youths is not vastly inferior (I’m being nice), so you can’t expect that to happen easily. There are already some French and Spanish U19 European champions who struggle to break through there so we can loan players in those leagues but it will always be the exception.
    In fact, the only players we have loaned out abroad recently were foreign players, so since the majority of our youth players are British, there you go. It is hard enough for some to gel in the Championship or League One, let alone in a different country.

    1. no one is saying it will be easy. Just because you are british doesn’t mean you should try somewhere else. Its very obvious its not working here. If 2-3 have a great success elsewhere I am sure more will follow. If its only 1-3 months loan then I see no reason what so every why not they go abroad and try holland or french league. Its seems very stupid too me for a young player to stay in an english team that doesn’t even play flowing football.

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