Last season was supposed to be an eventful one for Kido Taylor-Hart as, having caught the eye as a schoolboy, he stepped to full-time training at London Colney.
An injury, however, restricted him to just 10 appearances for the U18s and he understandably took time to regain sharpness thereafter before the season ended early.
Now, though, it is time for a fresh start and Taylor-Hart is determined to seize his opportunity. The 17-year-old is acutely aware that this is a pivotal campaign as he must earn a professional contract if he is to stay at the club.
Given the talent that he possesses, Taylor-Hart should, if he applies himself correctly, be able to earn an extended stay and perhaps more besides.
After making an impact for the U18s in pre-season, the winger, who usually plays on the left flank, was drafted into first-team training yesterday and stood out as he demonstrated his flair and also worked extremely hard to win the ball back.
The starlet is excellent technically and is also an astute finisher. In addition, he is tactically aware.
Fitness permitting, Taylor-Hart should be one of the stars for the U18s this season, and, although George Lewis is doing well on the left wing for the U23s, the Hale End product could well step up to represent the older age group as the campaign progresses, especially as there aren’t many alternative options out wide.
Previously capped by England at U17 level, it was a shame that Taylor-Hart couldn’t demonstrate his talents on a regular basis for Arsenal last season but now he will hope that his bad luck is behind him and he can push on.