Reiss Nelson and Joe Willock amongst nine youngsters to train with Arsenal first-team as pre-season gets underway



The Arsenal first-team held their maiden training session of pre-season this morning, with nine players from outside the senior squad in attendance.

Goalkeeper Matt Macey and midfielder Jon Toral, who are both now classed as senior players under Premier League and UEFA rules, trained with the squad.

In addition, exciting prospects Cohen Bramall, Reiss Nelson, Marcus McGuane, Eddie Nketiah, Dan Crowley, Donyell Malen and Joe Willock were also involved. Some of these youngsters are likely to be included in the squad for the upcoming friendlies in Australia.

Willock’s scholarship deal expired at the end of last month but it now appears that the prospect will be staying with the club.

There were some notable absentees as far as youngsters are concerned. Nigerian midfielder Kelechi Nwakali isn’t due in London until later this week, while Krystian Bielik has been given time off after the U21 European Championship and Gedion Zelalem and Stephy Mavididi are both still injured.

Josh Dasilva, meanwhile, is away with England at the U19 European Championship.

Ismael Bennacer, Julio Pleguezuelo, Ben Sheaf, Marc Bola and Tafari Moore weren’t selected to train with the first-team.

In terms of first-team players Sead Kolasinac (who had his first training session with the club), Mesut Ozil, Mathieu Debuchy, Kieran Gibbs, Per Mertesacker, Lucas Perez, Danny Welbeck, Theo Walcott, Carl Jenkinson, Emiliano Martinez, Chuba Akpom, Petr Cech and Francis Coquelin were all present, along with Jeff Reine-Adelaide, who was sporting the number 22 shirt after returning from injury.

The next batch of players – Laurent Koscielny, Aaron Ramsey, Olivier Giroud, David Ospina, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Alex Iwobi, Mohamed Elneny, Granit Xhaka, Wojciech Szczesny and Nacho Monreal – are set to return to London Colney next week.

Alexis Sanchez, Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin, Calum Chambers and Joel Campbell will miss a significant part of pre-season due to international commitments, while Santi Cazorla, Gabriel and Jack Wilshere are out injured.




  1. What’s the update on Deyan Iliev? Similarly with Ryan Huddart. We have several goalkeepers at the Club now, but how many do we need to cover all the positions from the First Team to the U-18s.

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