Loan report – Asano scores first Bundesliga goal; Perez features

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Takuma Asano scored his first Bundesliga goal as Stuttgart drew 1-1 with Hannover. The Japan international, who played up front, was also booked and was substituted after 73 minutes.

Lucas Perez played the whole game as Deportivo La Coruna drew 2-2 with Athletic Bilbao.

Kelechi Nwakali was an unused substitute as VVV-Venlo drew 3-3 with Willem II.

Cohen Bramall wasn’t involved and Carl Jenkinson missed out through injury as Birmingham City drew 1-1 with Sheffield United.

Joel Campbell missed out due to injury as Real Betis drew 2-2 with Girona.

Stephy Mavididi wasn’t involved due to injury as Preston North End drew 1-1 with Norwich City.

Marc Bola wasn’t involved as Bristol Rovers lost 2-1 to Blackburn Rovers.

Emiliano Martinez is expected to be amongst the substitutes for Getafe away to Espanyol tomorrow night.




Reine-Adelaide back from injury and Nelson trains with Arsenal first-team pre-Burnley



Arsenal held their final first-team training session today ahead of tomorrow afternoon’s Premier League game away to Burnley, with Jeff Reine-Adelaide playing a full part in proceedings.

The talented midfielder hasn’t played for the first-team this season and hasn’t featured at any level since having to be substituted in the U23s’ game against Sunderland last month.

Reine-Adelaide will hope to be in contention for Arsenal’s Europa League and Carabao Cup games in December.

Meanwhile, three members of the U23 squad trained with the first-team today, with Matt Macey, Reiss Nelson and Charlie Gilmour all involved in the session.

As far as first-team players are concerned, Theo Walcott didn’t train again due to illness but should be back soon, while Santi Cazorla remains sidelined.

Calum Chambers, Mathieu Debuchy, who are working their way back towards full fitness, and Chuba Akpom weren’t selected to train with the squad today,

Possible team






Subs: Ospina, Mertesacker, Coquelin, Wilshere, Iwobi, Welbeck, Giroud.


Report – Amaechi and Coyle star as Arsenal U18s thrash Tottenham 6-0

U18 Premier League

Arsenal 6 (Saka 18, 39, Coyle 27, Amaechi 31, 68, M. Smith 49) Tottenham Hotspur 0


Arsenal U18s thrashed their Tottenham Hotspur counterparts 6-0 at London Colney this morning, with Bukayo Saka and Xavier Amaechi both hitting braces.

Trae Coyle and Matt Smith were also on the scoresheet as Arsenal, who had established a 4-0 lead by half-time, ran out winners against their rivals in emphatic style.

Coach Kwame Ampadu made X alterations to the side that beat Norwich City last time out, with Vontae Daley-Campbell, Robbie Burton and Saka replacing Harry Clarke, Zak Swanson and Folarin Balogun.

Winger Jay Beckford was named on the bench for the first time this season after recovering from injury.


Daley Campbell-Ballard-Omole-Thompson

Benson-M. Smith



Subs: Spencer-Adams (for Omole, 73), Clarke (for Burton, 73), Beckford (for Saka, 76). Not used: Barden, Olayinka.

Arsenal were dominant early on and they took the lead in the 18th minute through a fine finish from Saka, with the schoolboy continuing to impress at this level.

It was soon 2-0 as Coyle found the net for the first time since returning from injury and then Amaechi, who was on the bench for the U23s last night, inflicted further misery upon Tottenham as he scored after being teed up by Robbie Burton.

Arsenal were unrelenting in their approach and added another goal before the break when Saka scored again, this time after being set up by Vontae Daley-Campbell.

Tottenham coach Scott Parker made a double change at half-time, which included bringing on Mauricio Pochettino’s son Maurizio Pochettino, but Arsenal remained in control of proceedings.

Shortly after the restart it was 5-0 as midfielder Matt Smith, who has been quietly impressive this campaign, managed to find the net.

Arsenal made it 6-0 later in the second half when Josh Benson found Amaechi, who provided another reminder of his quality.

There was another positive to take from proceedings as Beckford made his first appearance of the campaign, playing the last 14 minutes after replacing Saka.

Arsenal’s win was all the more commendable given that it was achieved without the likes of Emile Smith Rowe and Zech Medley, who were with the U23s last night, as well as Balogun, Tyreece John-Jules and Joseph Olowu, amongst others, who didn’t feature today.

Arsenal lined up without a recognised striker yet were still prolific in front of goal, with Coyle and Amaechi demonstrating just why they are so highly rated.

Saka continues to develop apace, while Burton and Benson will also be pleased with their contributions as they look to earn professional contracts.

Overall, this was a thoroughly satisfying encounter for Arsenal, made even better by the margin of victory and the identity of the opponents.

Dragomir hits brace; Dasilva and Willock impress as Arsenal U23s beat West Ham

Premier League 2 

Arsenal 3 (Dragomir 5, 34, Nketiah 84) West Ham 0

By Jeorge Bird @ Meadow Park


Arsenal U23s returned to winning ways in impressive fashion tonight as a brace from Vlad Dragomir and a strike from the clinical Eddie Nketiah secured a 3-0 victory at home to West Ham United.

The young Gunners were especially dominant in the first half and, in truth, their margin of victory could have been even higher, with Nketiah missing a penalty and Dragomir having an opportunity to complete his hat-trick.

Overall, though, this was still a very encouraging display, with Dragomir becoming increasingly influential at this level, while central-midfielders Joe Willock and Josh Dasilva were outstanding.

Arsenal made X changes to the team that was beaten by Swansea City on Monday night, with Matt Macey, Jordi Osei-Tutu, Ben Sheaf, Willock, Dasilva and Nketiah all starting in place of Hugo Keto, Tafari Moore, Tobi Omole, Charlie Gilmour, Aaron Eyoma and Tyreece John-Jules.

Nketiah, Willock, Sheaf and Macey were included despite being part of the squad for the first-team’s Europa League defeat against Cologne last night.



Osei Tutu-Dasilva-Willock-T. Bola

Dragomir-Smith Rowe


Subs not used: Keto, Gilmour, Amaechi, Eyoma.

Arsenal started a little nervously with Macey squandering possession but West Ham were unable to capitalise.

Soon Arsenal began to seize control of the game and they took the lead with just five minutes gone when Dragomir headed home from a free-kick.

It could have been 2-0 shortly afterwards, with Dragomir heavily involved in proceedings again as he played a clever pass into the path of Nketiah, who was brought down in the area.

Gilmour scored from the spot against Swansea but the midfielder was on the bench tonight so Nketiah stepped up, only to see his effort saved by Nathan Trott.

West Ham tested Macey at the other end but, despite Nketiah’s miss, Arsenal were full of confidence and were determined to add to their lead.

Willock missed an inviting opportunity to score following a slick passing move and then Nketiah had an attempt saved by Trott.

Although West Ham continued to threaten intermittently, it was Arsenal who were dominant and it seemed rather inevitable that Steve Gastting’s side would score again.

They did just that when Willock played a superb long distance pass into the path of Dragomir, who doubled his tally with an astute finish.

Arsenal weren’t satisfied with a 2-0 lead, however, and looked to score again. Nketiah again tested Trott but was still unable to find the net and then he had two further efforts that went over.

West Ham emerged for the second half with renewed determination and Macey had to make another impressive save following a rare mistake from Ben Sheaf.

Dragomir, Dasilva and Willock all tried to score but to no avail and Sheaf then sent a free-kick wide.

For all of their commendable attacking play, Arsenal also deserved credit for being resilient defensively as they managed to limit the threat of Toni Martinez, who has scored eight goals at this level this season.

Eventually Arsenal did get their third, with Nketiah’s perseverance paying off as he finall got the better of Trott after Osei-Tutu’s initial effort was blocked.

Nketiah had another shot saved late on before Dragomir came close to completing his hat-trick but the game was long since over as a contest.

This was certainly one of Arsenal’s best displays of the season so far as they played with dynamism and cohesion and were effective all over the pitch.

Dragomir and Nketiah will certainly hit the headlines for their goalscoring exploits, but Willock and Dasilva also deserve much praise.

Willock produced one of his standout recent performances as he played some superb passes and was constantly seeking to push Arsenal forwards.

Dasilva, meanwhile, seems settled in midfield again after a spell at left wing-back and made excellent use of his strength and technique.

Arsenal are back in Premier League International Cup action next week when they host Reading.

Nelson offers encouragement in defeat in Cologne


Arsenal’s final away group game in this season’s Europa League didn’t exactly go to plan, with Arsene Wenger’s side producing an uninspiring performance against Cologne and losing 1-0 courtesy of a contentious penalty, which was converted by Sehrou Guirassy.

Once again many of the club’s fringe players seemed uncomfortable in a 3-4-2-1 system, while the midfield pairing of Francis Coquelin and Mohamed Elneny was severely lacking with regards to creativity.

There were some positives to take from proceedings, however, in the performances of some of Arsenal’s younger players.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles has found matters tough at left wing-back at times this season but he looked at ease in that position tonight as he produced a composed display and demonstrated his excellent technique, even though his crosses lacked conviction.

Reiss Nelson had started all four of Arsenal’s previous Europa League games this campaign and was involved as a substitute on this occasion.

The England U19 international was again deployed as a right wing-back and came close to scoring his first senior goal after weaving his way past several Cologne players.

Eddie Nketiah also featured as a substitute, whilst Matt Macey, Ben Sheaf, Joe Willock and Chuba Akpom were all unused on the bench.

Arsenal add Joao Virginia to Europa League squad

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Image: NurPhoto

Arsenal have added goalkeeper Joao Virginia to their Europa League squad.

The Portugal youth international is now eligible for inclusion on Arsenal’s B List as he has been registered with the club for two whole years.

So far this season Virginia has played eight times for Arsenal U18s, while he made his U23 debut in the defeat to Tottenham Hotspur last month.

Virginia trained with the first-team today but won’t be involved in tomorrow night’s Europa League game away to Cologne, with David Ospina likely to start and Matt Macey set to be on the bench.

Goalkeeper Alex Crean and defender Zech Medley are the only young professionals not currently registered to play for Arsenal in the Europa League as they haven’t been with the club for two whole years.

Defensive lessons aiding Smith Rowe’s development for Arsenal U23s


Emile Smith Rowe has long been earmarked as a player with the potential to eventually make the breakthrough into the Arsenal first-team squad and this season he has taken a significant step towards achieving that objective as he has become increasingly involved with the U23s.

A winger with much flair and a penchant for scoring goals himself, Smith Rowe recently returned from India, where he helped England to win the U17 World Cup.

It is often the case that youngsters are given playing time in different positions to enhance various aspects of their game and that is the process that Smith Rowe is currently going through.

Against Porto in the Premier League International Cup last week Smith Rowe had a spell as a left wing-back after being brought on as a substitute, while in last night’s defeat to Swansea City in Premier League 2 the 17-year-old was deployed as a central midfielder.

Although he is tall, Smith Rowe certainly isn’t the strongest and he was outmuscled on several occasions against Swansea but he did manage to hold his own with the ball at his feet as he played some incisive forward passes.

Smith Rowe will hope to have fully established himself as an important part of the U23 side by the end of the campaign and the experience that he is currently gaining will be hugely beneficial for his overall development.

The first player born this millennium to represent both Arsenal U18s and U23s, Smith Rowe will hope to also achieve that feat for the first-team, although he faces competition in that regard from the likes of Tyreece John-Jules, Xavier Amaechi and Trae Coyle.

Smith Rowe’s game understanding is of a very high standard and he is capable of cutting inside from the left flank with excellent effect. Now it is hoped that he will become a more rounded player while not losing any of his attacking instincts.