The Under-23s Thread

Discussion in 'The Arsenal Academy Page' started by aevi, Aug 9, 2019.

  1. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Nope. Massive dearth in full backs. Zak Swanson is the next RB available. Hes solid and quite dependable at this level but not particularly quick. Good technically though. Tolaji Bola is the LB. Hes 20 now so at a decent age. Hes good physically, and pretty decent going forward but defensively leaves a lot to be desired. Theres Joseph Olowu and Tobi Omole, both CBs who play full back often but you'd think they're better centrally. Joel Lopez is not ready for u23 level yet and neither is Daniel Oyegoke from the u18s.

    Not so much recruitment as it is development more focused towards technique and attacking. I expect us to start producing some decent defenders soon - Mazeed Ogungbo, Zane Monlouis and Zach Awe are particularly promising CBs, as is Taylor Foran. Oyegoke looks very promising at RB currently. We will see with Lopez.
    krackpot and Dutch D like this.
  2. Dutch D

    Dutch D Well-Known Member

    Always appreciate the insights.

    I think it's good our fullbacks are developed more technically. Ajax often lets fullbacks play as a winger at a younger age, really helps with ballcontrol / passing / crossing. Grit and positioning can be taught at a somewhat later stage.

    Could really have done with good u23's right now to partner along Sokratis and cover our fitness issues at wingback.
  3. Should we not send out more of our promising u23 players on loan to championship clubs?
    I would like to send out even those that are playing regulary in with our first team, take Willock, Smith Rowe and Nelson and send them on loan this summer..
    Ofcourse that will only work if we can actualy go out and buy some players first and thats nothing we can rely on..
  4. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    On paper, this is something I would support. With Ben Knapper involved, we're obviously going to be a lot more rigorous about where we send these young players and honestly, we have a handful of U23 players who have nothing to gain from the PL2 anymore. Balogun can continue to cook at this level for the next 6 months but in particular Tyreece John-Jules is ready to test himself IMO, perhaps in League 1 or the Championship right now. I'd also say that there's not much to gain for Robbie Burton, Harry Clarke and Trae Coyle. Those 3 players IMO need to get league football under their belts soon, as bare as that would leave the U23 team. For guys like Tormey, Matt Smith, McGuinness, Olayinka - they need to build up their stock a little bit longer at this level and even some of those guys could do with a bit of men's football. With that said, we would definitely be sacrificing results at that level for development, especially considering the U18 team at the moment has barely acclimatised to U18 football at this stage with most of the team being made up of first years.

    That said, and this is mostly regarding the ones in the first team squad like Nelson, Willock and ESR, there are cases where a loan is the opposite that they need. Nelson and Willock are close to the first team and getting valuable minutes for a coach that seemingly believes in them and their ability. Sending them on loan sends the message that they are surplus and we could lose them despite their obvious talent. Not only that, but regarding all our young players, even a well-scouted loan can go pear-shaped if they have a stubborn manager *cough*BIELSA*cough* who won't play them or they go to the type of team that just does not play to any of their strengths.
  5. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    U23s are back tonight vs Derby at home and if you have spare time, Derby will be streaming the match on their website later on.

    Will be a good chance to see the likes of Burton, Smith, Clarke, John-Jules and possibly the return of Balogun from injury. Also a good chance to see how Trae Coyle will continue his improvement this season. He faces an uphill battle to rebuild his chances of succeeding at Arsenal but hes an excellent talent with athleticism and technical ability in spades.
    Football Manager likes this.
  6. Vanfrothan

    Vanfrothan Active Member

    I wonder if Nketiah will get a game tonight.

    Might be saving him for Monday.
  7. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    He'll go back out on loan most likely.
  8. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    So Coyle is injured, which is annoying as I did want to see him in this game. Burton is suspended, plus could be involved vs Leeds according to Jeorge Bird. Shame there's still no place for Miguel Azeez in this squad, so for now he has to work hard to get there.

    Will be good to see Cottrell start, maybe Balogun on the RW with John-Jules upfront. Think the lineup will be this:

    Olowu Clarke McGuinness Bola
    Smith Olayinka
    Balogun Cottrell Tormey
    Of this bunch, the spine of the team are the ones to watch arguably, along with Balogun. Cottrell, Smith and Olayinka in midfield will be interesting - I think quite highly of all 3, but there are difficulties for them when it comes to making it here. I would argue that at least one of these guys should go on loan. The 2 CBs will also be interesting - Medley could potentially start but I think McGuinness deserves a go aswell. Clarke is the constant, he's been the best performing U23 defender and is very promising.

    We all know about John-Jules and Balogun. John-Jules for me has a decent chance to make it here if given the opportunity. He has all the ingredients a modern #9 needs. Balogun on the other hand is another potential superstar, ruthless and exciting.
  9. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Cottrell on the bench in favor of McEneff - not sure about that one. McEneff has struggled quite a bit since making the step up to U23. Clarke, probably because he just came back from injury, left out for Medley, so we got the 2 big boys at the back. Will be good to see McGuinness play. Balogun will probably play wide right with Tormey on the left. Could be a flat 3 with Smith in the middle.

    For me, the two strikers, Smith and McGuinness the main ones I'm looking at for tonight. Smith has grown on me since the first time I saw him, a genuine technician like Burton, so eager to see how he does. McGuinness has been touted as talented for a while and did very well for the U18s last season. 2 strikers - well.

    The match is on here


    You have to sign up to Derby's website if you haven't already, but after that the match is free.
  10. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted


    John-Jules is #10 again, McEneff wide right. Hmmmm........
  11. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    McGuinness already off injured sadly. Clarke replaces him.

    Derby predictably look good. They're strong at this level. We dont look physical enough at the moment. Full backs losing the ball alot. Smith looks OK on the ball but no forward options.
  12. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Phwoar, Clarke coulda got a red there. Really planted one on their right back. Think hes responding to the physical nature of the Derby players but went way over the top there.
  13. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Matt Smith is excellent. Our best player so far. Plays Balogun in 1v1 with keeper but Balogun doesn't finish.
    Football Manager likes this.
  14. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Half time. Its 1-0 to Derby. They're good.

    We had good moments. Balogun, TJJ and Smith are the better players for us. Smith is very underrated. Clarke and Medley have actually been decent but Clarkes had 2 off moments and one led to Derbys penalty for the goal. The other a potential red card tackle. Everything else he did was good funnily enough.

    Tormey was poor, as were Bola and Olowu. Olayinkas put himself about and McEneff has been relatively OK. But Smith looks to be the one making us tick in possession, with Balogun and John-Jules providing the thrust. Want to see more from Olayinka. Hopefully Cottrell comes on.
  15. teamsoutheast

    teamsoutheast Well-Known Member

    I wantef to go to this one but I was knackered after work and dosed off! Derby have one of the best youth setups in the country IMO. Good team. That jahmal hector-ingram is prolific at this level and is the current PL2 top scorer. We could have been top of we won this I think. Good that we got back into it from 2-0 down.
  16. Ozil'sCloakOfInvisibility

    Ozil'sCloakOfInvisibility Not a Closet Spurs Fan

    Man Greenwood is some player. Keeps smashing in freekicks. Scored for the U-23s last night. Scored again today for the U-18s
    Football Manager likes this.
  17. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Greenwood has definitely bought himself some more minutes at U23 level. He's needed those goals and he's worked hard to get them. Will be good to see him build up momentum.
  18. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

  19. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

  20. MutableEarth

    MutableEarth Bloody awesome NSFW avatars Trusted

    Almost HT.

    Its 1-0 to us thanks to a Burton penalty. Tormey won it after great skill from Balogun drew a save from the goalie and Tormey was fouled on the rebound.

    Harry Clarke has had a great game so far, as has Matt Smith whis been excellent again. McEneff also looks impressive having grown into the game and Balogun is ever dangerous. Swanson has also been impressive. Tormey looks good tonight aswell. Been a confident performance.

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