Smith Rowe can take his game to next level with RB Leipzig loan


In contrast to previous years it was a very quiet January transfer window in terms of Arsenal youngsters heading out on loan, with Emile Smith Rowe the only player to do so.

The hugely talented Hale End graduate will spend the rest of the season with RB Leipzig, joining the growing crop of English youngsters to test themselves in the Bundesliga.

Smith Rowe will hope to replicate the success that his Arsenal team-mate Reiss Nelson has enjoyed at Hoffenheim in the first half of the campaign, and, intriguingly, the pair are set to face each other on February 25th.

Earlier this season Smith Rowe stated that it was his ambition to make his Premier League debut this campaign. Injuries have dictated that he will have to wait to fulfil that aim, but he will instead gain some extremely valuable experience in Germany.

The 18-year-old’s versatility – he can operate effectively out wide or as an attacking midfielder – should make him a useful asset for Ralf Rangnick’s side.

In addition, Smith Rowe will join a talented squad of players and should be tested extensively so that he can develop the defensive side of his game.

After starring in pre-season Smith Rowe made quite an impact for Arsenal in cup competitions in the first half of the campaign – he made six appearances, scoring three goals.

Injuries have halted his progress in recent months, but he is now fit again and ready to finish the season strongly in a new environment.

Had he remained with the Gunners then he may well have been involved in the Europa League but with the club out of the FA Cup and Denis Suarez having arrived on loan from Barcelona, further opportunities would probably have been limited.

If all goes well this could prove to be an inspired move for Smith Rowe and should prepare him for pre-season, when he will look to truly establish himself in the first-team squad at Arsenal.



  1. I think it is a positive step to only loan our best prospects and to top teams, rather than struggling ones or lower leagues. Hopefully a lesson was learnt with the shambolic Serge Gnabry loan to a Tony Pulis team.
    Once concern over ESR is his injury, however I expect both he and Nelson will come back more prepared to force their way into the first team on the back of their respective loans.

  2. how much time can he expect to receive? even Sancho is not a first choice player and he signed until 2022
    RBL is something that doesn’t sound like relying on youth players (unlike dortmund or hoffenheim)
    tbh i’m sceptical of this move and happy nketiah did not sign for a struggling side like augsburg

  3. A struggling side is not necessary a bad thing, as one could face serious opponents. Like Macey, who went on loan to League 1’s bottom (24th) team. He faced many shots on goal and eventually they went on climbing to the 16th spot, but Matt played once in the last 4 or 5 games. So Nketiah’s Augsburg loan could have turned out alright, however the disadvantage wasn’t about battling relegation but being #3 in the strikers’ pecking order which wouldn’t guarantee him significantly more playing time than here in London.
    Anyway ESR’s adventure in Lepzig is better than a Championship loan, so let’s hope he makes the best of it.

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