Aneke scores again, but time is running out for class of 2009

Another game and another goal for Chuks Aneke, with the 20 year old’s strike against Carlisle United yesterday taking his tally to six goals in 21 games for Crewe Alexandra so far this season.

Having failed to impose himself during previous loan spells with Stevenage and Preston North End, Aneke has certainly made an impact for Crewe over the past couple of seasons, with the former England U19 international underlining that he is more than capable of performing regularly at League One level.

Whether he has the ability to perform on an even higher plane is still open to some debate. His current Arsenal contract expires in the summer and, despite the fact that Arsene Wenger has always kept keen tabs on his development, at present it is difficult to envisage an opening for Aneke given the array of midfield talents at Emirates Stadium.

All Aneke can do, with his future at his parent club still somewhat up in the air, is to continue to perform consistently for Crewe and hope that everything else will fall into place. The central-midfielder has always been a player known for his determination to succeed, but, despite his achievements whilst on temporary transfer, it is becoming increasingly difficult to envisage him becoming a regular at Arsenal.

A close friend of Aneke’s also finds himself in something of a difficult predicament, with Nico Yennaris also seeing his contract run out at the end of June. Whilst Aneke has shone out on loan, however, Yennaris has not played a single minute during a five-week loan spell at Bournemouth which is due to expire today.

Despite having once featured as a substitute against Manchester United in the Premier League, it seems as if Yennaris’ days at Arsenal are also coming to an end, whilst Benik Afobe, who has grown up alongside Aneke and Yennaris, will also have his work cut out to earn a new long-term deal, particularly if the club sign another striker during this month’s transfer window.

As far as the rest of the 2009 intake is concerned, Ignasi Miquel has done relatively well at Leicester City but a question mark still remains over his Arsenal future, whilst Daniel Boateng is a certainty to be released when his contract expires in the summer.




  1. Wenger needs to look at him, then think back to Yaya Toure’s trial at a similar age : how do they compare?

    A player of his size and skill shouldn’t be given up on easily. If his wages are modest I’d make every effort to get him on another deal then insist on Championship loan next season. My feeling is that he won’t be amenable to that,though, anyway, and has already decided to leave (one of his last tweets back in Aug was about ‘big life decisions’, sounded more like someone leaving a club that going off for a loan spell). His staying probably hinged around involvement this year.

    Yennaris leaving would be sadder than most : good guy with an excellent attitude and loves the club. Just another one who, like Aneke, would’ve had a hell of a lot of chances in the B team in a Spanish- or-German-type system. Both are slight casualties of the trophy failure : if we’d won something they’d probably have been guaranteed good Carling Cup time, regardless of opposition.

  2. I hope Aneke will be offered a new contract come this summer. I still also hope that of the class of 2009, Miquel and Martinez will take that step up too.
    Looking at the current midfielders in the First team, over the next two years may see the departure of Rosicky, Arteta, Carzola and Flamini. No doubt some will see the Ox, Gnabry and Zalalem filling their places. And let’s not forget the players from the Class of 2011/12 like Hayden, Ollson, Toral, Jebb and further down the line, Crowley. Arsenal is blessed with this nice headache in midfield !!

  3. whatever happens with Aneke i would wish him the best of luck. We should give him an opportunity for us before we make any more decisions. The fact that he is doing well in League one with players that are not as good as Arsenal’s shows that he can play at a higher level. He needs a loan to a championship club and continue to oversee his develop still so young really.

  4. We are well stocked with midfielders, but I always kinda saw Yenarris in the right-back role…
    Maybe he has a future in that position, at Arsenal?

    1. would be nice but as the club have invested in a right back from Ebbsfleet FC ooops sorry Charlton cannot see it happening.
      Unfortunately Yennaris was never afforded the same opportunity despite making his debut against Man Utd when he replaced Djourou who was having a mightmare.

  5. All 3 (Afobe, Aneke, Yennaris) have no future at Arsenal. For their sakes they should look to find themselves the right club to progress. Would love them all to be a success and make it back to the PL.
    JET is setting a great example at Bristol City, and he will surely rise back up the leagues in the near future. Henri Lansbury is another who shows leaving Arsenal is not the end of the dream, hoping he finds himself in the PL next season with Forest.

  6. Chris willock trained with the first team today! Btw jeorge other than the Lithuanian trialists and risa any chance of going for a slightly older prospect? Haven’t seen that much of him but patrick roberts seemed promising though that’s obviously not happening now.
    Don’t think any of miquel, chuks and yennaris will make it now. Just about no chance I’m particularly gutted for yennaris who, along with ryo are my favourite youth players not because they were the most talented but their commitement and (in case of ryo) style.

  7. Watched the Crewe game against Carlisle as my missus brother has a Carlisle subscription. He’s clearly a late developer in terms of getting used to his body and it becoming stronger. He’s adding all the ugly professional edges to his game from what I saw. Winning headers, doing the donkey work as well as the sublime touches which he possesses. Got a feeling that if we let him go, we will rue that decision in 5 years time.

  8. Hopefully Aneke, Yennaris and Afobe are given at least 2 more years before they are written off. Thumbs up to Miquel & Martinez for doing well so far.

  9. Because of the new U21 and home grown premiership team clauses, Aneke may get a reprieve. Yennaris, Frimpong, Coquelin have great attitudes, but they do not have the tactical awareness, positional sense, fouling nous that a good defensive midfielder needs in the EPL. I think that may come in 2~3 years time with experience and game time.
    I don’t think that they will get a new contract. However if they do, they would be sold in a year time with a buy back clause. The same way AFC inserted a buy back clause in Carlos Vela’s contract.
    Miquel is a decent defender, but he is not what we need. Koscielny, Vermaelen are good aggressive defenders. We need a real organiser at the back. A talker a la Flamini, somebody who is willing to bark orders. Unfortunately that’s not Miquel. It’s a shame, because he will become a good defender, but with a change of attitude he could become a great defender.
    Olivier Giroud, Yaya Sanogo and Bentdner injuries have open ajar the door for Afobe. If he can take it, he may get a chance to make it at AFC. He may have only two games (FA Cup + EPL). If he does not take his chance, I’m afraid his days at Arsenal are coming to an end in June.

  10. Aneke has a lot in common with Xabi Alonso and John Michael Obi in both size and technical skill set. Am surprised that Arsenal has not tried him as a Pirlo type.

    With his touch on the ball and passing and shooting skills I woukd think that centre forward is not a stretch for him either.

    Would be a waste if Arsensl let him go. The same is true of Yennaris and Afobe too, who are fighters and highly professional. You have to find a way to hold on to those, the same way that Chelsea kept Terry and Man U is keeping Welbeck.

  11. Afobe, Aneke, Yennaris – all 3 came through together lasting the journey from the beginning. The fact remains none of them were ever afforded the same opportunities with the first team that others have which is a shame.
    Training with the first team day in day out would have improved them but they were put to one side and watched others come into the club and get fast tracked.
    Wish all 3 the best of luck for the future shame we never gave them a chance.

  12. lanesra, I believe premier League academy rules state that you can only recruit from your geographic area; in the case of Arsenal, north London. Thats a limited pool of talent available. the chances of finding a truly world class player evry oda yr is slim to none. as a result every half-decent player is overhyped. Look at Wilshere’s example; he was 16 when he made his first team debut.cos he’s class. some Other leagus havse not this problem of recruiting. like barca.

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