Arsenal will complete the signing of talented Aston Villa midfielder Dan Crowley tomorrow, with the England U17 international due at London Colney to finalise his move to the club.
It is expected that the signing of Yaya Sanogo from Auxerre will also be completed in the forthcoming days. Whilst Sanogo will go straight into the first-team squad for the forthcoming campaign, Crowley, who is regarded as one of the country’s outstanding prospects, is expected to begin life at Arsenal in the U18s.
The midfielder has consistently caught the eye at international level and was the scourge of Arsenal U18s as Villa ran out 6-1 winners in the Academy League late last season. He will add to the club’s collection of promising central-midfielders, joining Kristoffer Olsson, Jon Toral, Gedion Zelalem and Jack Jebb.
Arsenal have also confirmed today the departure of 10 youngsters, with striker Philip Roberts joining those who were already revealed to have left the club. A Republic of Ireland youth international signed from Norwich City in 2010, Roberts shone for Arsenal at U18 level during his first season at the club but failed to impress during a loan spell with Inverness Caledonian Thistle in Scotland this campaign.
Sanchez Watt, who scored on his first-team debut in the Carling Cup, has also been let go. The striker has experienced six loan spells away from the club in recent years and it has been clear for some time that he was not going to make the grade at Emirates Stadium.
Midfielder Conor Henderson, meanwhile, featured against Leyton Orient in the FA Cup in 2011, but has seen his young career plagued by injuries. He joins left-back Jernade Meade, who featured twice for the first-team, in seeking pastures new.
Goalkeepers James Shea and Reice Charles-Cook have also departed, with Shea being released despite making the bench for the first-team in all four senior competitions. Defender Sead Hajrovic, who previously spent time on loan with Barnet, demonstrated much improvement this season but couldn’t force his way into Arsene Wenger’s first-team plans.
The departures of striker Nigel Neita and left-back Samir Bihmoutine are unsurprising, with neither player having fully imposed themselves on the U21 set-up. The versatile Josh Rees has offers from several clubs and is expected to make a decision on his future shortly. Centre-back Zach Fagan has also been released following the expiry of his scholarship.
Five further youngsters who were let go by the club have already found new suitors. Martin Angha and Kyle Ebecilio have joined Nuremberg and FC Twente respectively, midfielder Jordan Wynter has secured a deal with Bristol City, Elton Monteiro has signed for Club Brugge and Craig Eastmond will become a permanent Colchester United player on July 1st.