FA Youth Cup preview – Arsenal to host Northampton Town or Swindon Town – who will play in the competition this season?


The draw for the third round of the FA Youth Cup has been made, with Arsenal to host either Northampton Town or Swindon Town next month.

The young Gunners got to the final last season, where they were heavily beaten by Chelsea over two legs, and will look to go all the way this time around.

Here’s a look at who could play for Arsenal in the competition this season, with players born between September 1st 2000 and September 1st 2003 eligible to feature.

Bukayo+Saka+Arsenal+vs+Everton+Premier+League+TpWe5lcUKEGl

Goalkeeper

Arthur Okonkwo seems set to start in goal, with Karl Hein providing backup.

Right-back

Vontae Daley-Campbell has been the regular right-back for the U18s this season and looks certain to start in that position.

Centre-backs

Mark McGuinness and Bayli Spencer-Adams have featured prominently this campaign, and should be involved.

Left-back

Joel Lopez has settled in well since signing from Barcelona, while Zak Swanson can also fill in in this position if required.

Central-midfield

James Olayinka, who has established himself as an important figure for the U23s, is a certainty to be involved, while Matt Smith should start alongside him. Jordan McEneff and Harry Clarke are both out injured.

Right wing

Folarin Balogun is more suited to playing up front but might have to play out wide to allow Tyreece John-Jules to lead the line. Xavier Amaechi remains injured. Stan Flaherty, who has impressed for the U18s, will look to make the squad.

Attacking midfield

Trae Coyle will relish the chance to play in the number ten position. Highly rated schoolboy Yunus Musah could make the bench.

Left wing

Bukayo Saka may now be part of the U23 setup but the hugely talented youngster should drop back down to the U18s for this competition.

Striker

As already alluded to, John-Jules should start up front, while Sam Greenwood is set to provide another option from the bench.

Possible team:

Okonkwo

Daley Campbell-McGuinness-Spencer Adams-Lopez

M. Smith-Olayinka

Balogun-Coyle-Saka

John Jules

Subs: Hein, Swanson, Musah, Greenwood, Flaherty

Other options: Barden (injured), T. Smith (injured), Alebiousu, Cottrell, Dennis, Martin, Matthews.

 

When all players are fit, Arsenal’s team could look something like this

Okonkwo

Daley Campbell-McGuinness-Spencer Adams-Saka

M. Smith-Olayinka

Amaechi-Coyle-Balogun

John Jules

Subs: Hein, Lopez, McEneff, Clarke, Greenwood

 

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