Report – Smith-Rowe hits winner as Arsenal U18s beat Norwich


Emile Smith-Rowe marked his return from injury by hitting an injury-time winner as Arsenal U18s came from behind to beat their Norwich City counterparts 2-1 away today.

The Gunners made three alterations from the team that lost to Fulham last time out, with Joao Virginia, Tolaji Bola and Marcus McGuane coming into the side in place of Alex Crean, Jay Beckford and Trae Coyle.

Arsenal started slowly and Norwich took full advantage, with former Gunner Benny Ashley-Seal opening the scoring in the 17th minute.

However, Norwich’s hopes of taking all three points suffered a considerable setback when they were reduced to ten men following the dismissal of Alfie Payne for a second bookable offence.

Arsenal eventually took advantage of their numerical superiority, with Zech Medley, deployed on the left wing despite nominally being a centre-back, equalising in the 87th minute following impressive work from Jordi Osei-Tutu.

Smith-Rowe, who had come on in place of Robbie Burton, then scored the decisive goal in stoppage time to see Arsenal go third in the table.

Arsenal: Virginia; Osei-Tutu, Ballard, Pileas, T. Bola; McGuane, Gilmour; J. Willock, Burton (Smith-Rowe, 61), Medley (Omole, 89); Fortune. Not used: Barden, Thompson, Benson.




Rejuvenated Malen returns to form after flying start to 2017


The qualities that saw Donyell Malen earmarked as an extremely exciting prospect are extremely clear within an instant of watching him play – the Dutchman possesses pace, power and technical ability in abundance, with those attributes seeing him make a significant impact in his first season at Arsenal following his switch from Ajax.

Malen’s early performances suggested that he could well have a very bright future at Arsenal – the striker initially caught the eye in the U18s before stepping up to make an impact for what was then the U21 side, while he also trained with the first-team squad on several occasions.

This season, however, the prospect has had to endure his fair share of difficulties. With Stephy Mavididi having been installed as the first-choice striker for the U23s prior to his loan switch to Charlton Athletic and Eddie Nkeitah continuing to score with regularity for the U18s, Malen found himself somewhat overshadowed.

The youngster’ s difficult situation was reflected in his performances. When playing for the U18s, Malen’s touch was often heavy, he appeared to be lacking confidence and he certainly lacked ruthlessness in front of goal; problems which were also apparent on the rare occasions that he featured for the older age groups.

Any fears that Malen wouldn’t be able to emerge from this slump have quickly frittered away, however, as he has started 2017 with a spring in his step.

With three goals in three games for the U18s, Malen was certainly one of Arsenal’s best performing young players in January, while he also showcased his adaptability as he demonstrated that he is capable of having a significant impact on the left wing, where he can glide past players with ease.

After Mavididi went on loan and with Nketiah struggling with injury, Malen was given a starting berth as Arsenal U23s faced Everton this week. Although he failed to find the net, the 18-year-old will be delighted to finally be back in the second-string set-up and, having got his confidence back, will now be hoping to end the season very strongly.

Report – Martinez and Jenkinson feature as Arsenal U23s suffer late agony against Everton


Premier League 2

Everton 1 Arsenal 0

A much-changed Arsenal U23 side suffered late agony away to league leaders Everton this evening, with substitute Nathan Broadhead hitting a late winner for the hosts.

Arsenal were thrashed 5-0 when these sides met earlier in the campaign, but Steve Gatting’s side managed to give a much better account of themselves on this occasion.

They were unable to hold on, however, and in truth Everton merited their victory having tested Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez on several occasions.

With many players having left the club on loan in the closing stages of the transfer window, Gatting called upon several members of the U18 side for this fixture, with Joseph Olowu, Josh Dasilva, Donyell Malen and Vlad Dragomir all starting.

Two members of the first-team squad, Martinez and Carl Jenkinson, were also involved, while Cohen Bramall continued at left-back and there was a rare start for Savvas Mourgos. Eddie Nketiah, however, missed out through injury.




Mourgos-Dragomir-C. Willock


Subs: Fortune (for Malen, 83). Not used: Virginia, Johnson, T. Bola, McGuane.

Reiss Nelson had the first opportunity of the game, with the England youth international, deployed in central midfield, shooting over.

At the other end Martinez then had to react quickly to keep out Kieran Dowell’s effort, with Arsenal eventually managing to scramble away the danger.

Everton were the dominant side for much of the opening period and Martinez was on hand to prevent Courtney Duffus from getting a shot away when well placed.

Henry Charlsley, who was impressive in midfield for Everton, then shot over but Arsenal managed to mount a response, with Nelson seeing his attempt saved.

The final opportunity of the half fell to Everton, with defender Matthew Foulds embarking upon a mazy run downfield only to see his effort repelled by Martinez.

Arsenal started the second period brightly, with Vlad Dragomir’s fierce shot from distance saved by Everton goalkeeper Mateusz Hewelt.

However, it was Arsenal’s goalkeeper, Martinez, who continued to shine, with the Argentine denying Anton Donkor.

Duffus later squandered an inviting chance to score the winner for Everton as the clock ticked down and it appeared as if Arsenal were going to hold on.

Yassin Fortune, who scored for the U18s against Fulham on Saturday, entered the fray late on as he made his first appearance for the U23s this season.

Arsenal’s hopes of securing a point were dashed in the closing stages, however, with substitute Broadhead finding the net for Everton after he was located by Dowell.



Loan report- Wilshere, Toral and Crowley assist; Zelalem makes debut


Jack Wilshere played the whole game and set up a goal for Josh King as Bournemouth lost 6-3 to Everton.

Calum Chambers played the full game at right-back as Middlesbrough lost 1-0 to Tottenham Hotspur.

Chuba Akpom has already made two appearances for Brighton & Hove Albion. The striker came on in the 63rd minute of the 3-1 loss to Huddersfield Town on Thursday, while he was introduced as a 65th minute substitute in the 3-3 draw against Brentford today.

Jon Toral played the full game, provided an assist and was booked as Rangers drew 1-1 with Ross County.

Kelechi Nwakali played the entirety of MVV Maastricht’s goalless draw with Achilles’ 29. Stefan O’Connor was an un-used substitute.

Dan Crowley set up a goal and played 71 minutes as Go Ahead Eagles beat NEC 2-1.

Marc Bola came on in the 37th minute for his senior debut as Notts County lost 2-0 to Accrington Stanley.

Kaylen Hinds also made his professional debut, with the forward coming on in the 78th minute of Stevenage’s 2-1 win over Crawley Town.

Gedion Zelalem made his first appearance for VVV-Venlo, with the midfielder being brought on in the 75th minute of his side’s 4-1 victory over De Graafschap.

Ismael Bennacer made his debut for Tours, coming on in the 70th minute of the 1-1 draw with Reims.

Tafari Moore played the whole of Utrecht II’s 2-0 defeat to PSV II.

Krystian Bielik was an un-used substitute as Birmingham City beat Fulham 1-0.

Stephy Mavididi was an un-used substitute as Charlton Athletic drew 1-1 with Fleetwood Town.

Matt Macey was an un-used substitute as Luton Town drew 1-1 with Grimsby Town.

Julio Pleguezuelo was an un-used substitute in Mallorca’s 2-1 loss to Real Oviedo.

Joel Campbell wasn’t involved as Sporting Lisbon were beaten 2-1 by Porto.

Aaron Eyoma wasn’t involved as Volendam lost 3-1 to Emmen.

Wojciech Szczesny‘s Roma weren’t in action this weekend.

Takuma Asano is expected to feature when Stuttgart host Fortuna Dusseldorf tomorrow night.



Report- Fortune scores as Arsenal U18s are beaten by Fulham

U18 Premier League

Fulham 3 Arsenal 2 (Fortune, Coyle)

Second half goals from Yassin Fortune and Trae Coyle weren’t sufficient to prevent Arsenal U18s from falling to a defeat away to their Fulham counterparts today. 

The young Gunners found themselves three goals down at Motspur Park but, despite improving significantly in the second period, still saw their impressive recent run come to an end. 

With a host of youngsters having left the club on loan in the closing stages of the transfer window, several key players weren’t involved for the U18s today as they are instead expected to feature for the U23s against Everton on Monday – with Josh DaSilva, Vlad Dragomir, Donyell Malen, Tolaji Bola, Joseph Olowu and Eddie Nketiah all falling into that category. 

In their absence, there were a batch of players brought into the U18 side, with Zech Medley, Daniel Ballard, Robbie Burton and Jay Beckford all starting, the latter making a rare appearance. 

Arsenal got off to a bad start with Kostas Pileas scoring an own goal, and then Fulham doubled their advantage courtesy of substitute Michael Elstone. 

Early in the second half it was 3-0 to the hosts as Joseph Felix found the net from the penalty spot. 

Arsenal attempted to reduce the deficit and they did just that when Fortune scored his first goal of an injury hit season. 

The Frenchman was substituted shortly afterwards and replaced by schoolboy Tyreece John-Jules, who proceeded to tee up Coyle to make it 3-2. 

Fulham, however, managed to hold on to take all three points. 

Arsenal: Crean; Osei-Tutu, Medley, Ballard, Pileas; Gilmour, J. Willock; Beckford, Burton, Coyle; Fortune. 

Subs: John-Jules (for Fortune, 63), Thompson (for Beckford, 77), Omole (for Ballard, 84). Not used: Barden. 

Arsenal add Bramall, Crean and Medley to Premier League squad

2017-02-02 19_29_03-Jeorge Bird (@jeorgebird) _ Twitter - Opera.png

Arsenal have submitted their updated Premier League squad for the remainder of the season, with January signing Cohen Bramall amongst three youngsters added to the Under-21 list.

Goalkeeper Alex Crean and defender Zech Medley have also been added, while Carl Jenkinson is named on the senior list despite having been left out of the club’s Champions League squad.

All of the senior loanees- Wojciech Szczesny, Jack Wilshere, Joel Campbell, Takuma Asano and Matt Macey- have been omitted but the U21 players on temporary transfer have been included.

Arsenal’s Premier League squad

Senior list

Gabriel, Santi Cazorla, Petr Cech, Francis Coquelin*, Mathieu Debuchy, Mohamed Elneny, Kieran Gibbs, Olivier Giroud, Carl Jenkinson*, Laurent Koscielny, Emiliano Martinez*, Per Mertesacker, Nacho Monreal, Shkodran Mustafi, David Ospina, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain*, Mesut Ozil, Lucas Perez, Aaron Ramsey*, Alexis Sanchez, Yaya Sanogo, Theo Walcott*, Danny Welbeck*, Granit Xhaka.

*= homegrown

U21 list

Chuba Akpom, Daniel Ballard, Jay Beckford, Hector Bellerin, Ismael Bennacer, Josh Benson, Krystian Bielik, Marc Bola, Tolaji Bola, Cohen Bramall, Robbie Burton, Calum Chambers, Alex Crean, Dan Crowley, Kristopher Da Graca, Josh Dasilva, Vlad Dragomir, Aaron Eyoma, Yassin Fortune, Charlie Gilmour, Kaylen Hinds, Rob Holding, Ryan Huddart, Deyan Iliev, Alex Iwobi, Chiori Johnson, Glen Kamara, Hugo Keto, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Donyell Malen, Stephy Mavididi, Marcus McGuane, Zech Medley, Tafari Moore, Savvas Mourgos, Reiss Nelson, Eddie Nketiah, Kelechi Nwakali, Stefan O’Connor, Joseph Olowu, Tobi Omole, Jordi Osei-Tutu, Kostas Pileas, Julio Pleguezuelo, Jeff Reine-Adelaide, Ben Sheaf, Emile Smith-Rowe, Nathan Tella, Dominic Thompson, Jon Toral, Nathan Tormey, Joao Virginia, Chris Willock, Joe Willock, Gedion Zelalem

Arsenal add Welbeck + Mertesacker to Champions League squad, Jenkinson left out


Arsenal have submitted their updated Champions League squad for the knockout stages of the competition, with Danny Welbeck and Per Mertesacker included, while Carl Jenkinson has been left out.

Welbeck and Mertesacker were omitted from Arsenal’s squad for the group stages because of injury but have now been reinstated, replacing Jenkinson and Krystian Bielik, with the latter having joined Birmingham City on loan.

Mathieu Debuchy and Yaya Sanogo are in the squad, as is Santi Cazorla, who is still recovering from injury.

January signing Cohen Bramall isn’t named as he isn’t eligible for the B-List and there isn’t sufficient space on the A-List.

With regards to youngsters, the hugely talented Reiss Nelson is included on the B-List for the first time, as is prolific striker Eddie Nketiah, while goalkeeper Ryan Huddart is also named after returning from his loan spell at Eastleigh. Glen Kamara, who failed to see a loan move to Twente come to fruition, isn’t included.

Vlad Dragomir, Alex Crean, Yassin Fortune, Donyell Malen and Jordi Osei-Tutu aren’t yet eligible for inclusion on the B-List. All players on loan have been left out.

Arsenal Champions League squad

2. Mathieu Debuchy, 3. Kieran Gibbs, 4. Per Mertesacker, 5. Gabriel, 6. Laurent Koscielny, 7. Alexis Sánchez, 8. Aaron Ramsey, 9. Lucas Pérez, 11. Mesut Özil, 12. Olivier Giroud, 13. David Ospina, 14. Theo Walcott, 15. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 16. Rob Holding, 17. Alex Iwobi*, 18. Nacho Monreal, 19. Santi Cazorla, 20. Shkodran Mustafi, 22. Yaya Sanogo, 23. Danny Welbeck, 24. Héctor Bellerín*, 26. Emiliano Martínez, 29. Granit Xhaka, 31. Jeff Reine-Adélaïde, 33. Petr Čech, 34. Francis Coquelin, 35. Mohamed Elneny, 39. Tolaji Bola*, 42. Kristopher Da Graca*, 43. Josh Dasilva*, 46. Charlie Gilmour*, 49. Ryan Huddart*, 50. Deyan Iliev*, 51. Chiori Johnson*, 53. Hugo Keto*, 55. Ainsley Maitland-Niles*, 58. Marcus McGuane*, 60. Savvas Mourgos*, 65. Ben Sheaf*, 68. Chris Willock*, 72. Reiss Nelson*, 73. Eddie Nketiah*.

*= B-List