Whatever happened to #9… Obed, Bothroyd, Jordan, Larsson, Norbert


Signed scholarship: 2008. Arsenal apps: 0. Subsequent career: Geylang International, Sektzia Nes Tziona, Ethnikos Gazoros. 

A right-back who can also operate as a defensive midfielder, Obed largely struggled during his two year scholarship at London Colney and was released when his deal expired in 2010. He spent a couple of years out of the game, training with local clubs, before heading to Singapore to join Geylang International in 2012, for whom he scored once in twelve appearances. He was linked with a move to Hapoel Tel Aviv, but eventually ended up at Greek side Ethnikos Gazoros in January and was a regular during the second half of the campaign.






Signed scholarship: 1998. Arsenal apps: 0. Subsequent career: Arsenal apps: 0. Subsequent career: Coventry City, Perugia, Blackburn Rovers (loan), Charlton Athletic, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Stoke City (loan), Cardiff City, QPR, Sheffield Wednesday (loan). 

Now 31, Bothroyd has endured a rather nomadic career since leaving Arsenal in controversial circumstances in 2000, but did win what is to date his only senior England cap against France in 2010. A promising striker making his way through the ranks at Highbury, Bothroyd’s Arsenal career came to an abrupt end when he threw his shirt at coach Don Howe after being substituted in the Premier Academy League Final. He moved on to Coventry City, but, after three years, relocated to Italy with Perugia before returning to England with Blackburn Rovers in 2004. Since then, he has spent time at six different clubs, mostly in the second tier of English football, and is currently seeking a new employer having been released by Queen’s Park Rangers in June.


Signed scholarship: 2002. Arsenal apps: 0. Subsequent career: Chesterfield, Lewes, Stevenage Borough, Eastbourne Borough, Farnborough, Boreham Wood, Concord Rangers.

A shot-stopper with good reflexes who impressed during his youth team days at the club, Jordan made the bench for the first-team’s League Cup win over Everton in 2004 but, after a brief loan spell with Yeovil Town, was released in the summer of 2006. He moved to League One Chesterfield, but only featured seven times before being let go two years later, and has subsequently dropped into non-league football, particularly impressing with Farnborough and Boreham Wood before joining Concord Rangers last year.




Signed scholarship: 2001. Arsenal apps: 12. Subsequent career: Birmingham City, Sunderland.

Undoubtedly one of the biggest success stories of the Arsenal Academy since its reformation, midfielder Larsson, now 28, has been capped by Sweden 55 times. He made just a dozen senior outings for Arsenal, many of them coming at full-back, before being loaned to Birmingham City in 2006. He impressed so much under the tutelage of Steve Bruce that he joined the Blues on a permanent deal the following year and eventually stayed at St Andrew’s until 2011, before joining Sunderland. An expert free-kick taker, Larsson has successfully carved out a career for himself in England’s top flight.


Signed scholarship: 1997. Arsenal apps: 0. Subsequent career: Lorient, US Creteil-Lustianos (loan), Angers, Nantes, Le Havre.

One of the more obscure Academy products of yesteryear, midfielder Norbert was one of the first foreign youngsters signed by Arsenal, having been plucked from PSG’s academy in 1997. He failed to establish himself in North London, however, and moved back to his homeland with Lorient, remaining in France ever since. He currently plays for Le Havre in Ligue 2, having joined from Nantes in 2008.



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