Wenger on where his Europa League youngsters play


Even in this day and age, with so much coverage of young players, the names of Marcus McGuane, Charlie Gilmour, Vlad Drogomir and Josh Dasilva are still likely to have some fans scratching their heads.

The latter made his first team debut in the 1-0 win over Doncaster last week, but the first three are yet to make an appearance outside of youth level.

All have made the trip to Belarus to face BATE Borisov tomorrow night and Arsene Wenger was asked to fill in the blanks a little bit.

“Gilmour is a defender or central midfielder, he said. “McGuane is a defensive midfielder, and overall he can play as a wing-back or even a centre back in training.

“Josh Dasilva is a left wing-back or a left-centre back. Vlad Dragomir is a Romanian boy, he was with us for a few years.

“He’s a No 10, Wilshere-style, left-footed, a creative player.”

Whether they get to play remains to be seen, but skipper Per Mertesacker – who will take over the Arsenal academy next season – says it’s a chance for them to learn.

“To train with us, to travel with us, it’s the big time for such a young group,” he said.

“But it’s now up to them to resist those pressure situations.”

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I want Vlad Dragomir to make it in the worst way. His name alone should strike fear into the hearts of our enemies defense.

Bai Blagoi

Vlad, a form of Vladimir, is not unknown in Belarus, so I doubt this tactic will work exactly in this game


I wonder how he feels about crosses?


I’d be more worried for him if we start poorly and let BATE get a stake in the game.


Late kick off perfectly suits Vlad…


We gotta keep Vlad Dragomir for his name alone. ?


Dasilva left wing back? Good, rest Kola and Monreal.


Looking forward to seeing Hleb at the game..

Bai Blagoi

He doesn’t play for BATE anymore, but might come as a spectator.


…but why do we bother, they won’t play in their natural position anyway ?


Point is they get invaluable game experience with the 1st team


There will be Vlad.




Wenger is asked where is the best position for these youngsters to play Wenger says; Gilmour is a centre back or a central midfielder; McGuane plays wing back, a defensive midfielder or a centre back in training Dasilva is a left wing back or left centre back?? This is the fucking problem with Wenger he’s obsessed with creating players who are not specialists in one position. Wenger pisses about too much with players for example Maitland Miles should be played in his natural position not as a bloody wing back and the same goes for Reiss Nelson.


what is AMN natural position? he started off as a Winger. Should he be forced and stay in that position because god forbid players evolving. Should Arsenal have gave up on AMN when he wasn’t rated as a Winger anymore?


By that logic, should we revert Cazorla back to his previous position as a winger? Cazorla initially joined us and played as a winger, then played as AM, and then in the central midfield. I guess that was clearly a mistake.

Lucas Sam

Bale was a left back, bellerin was a winger, aubameyang was a winger, henry was a winger, van persie was a winger, kolo toure was a def midfield/right back. Should i go on? Its called adaptability and its required in the modern game.

crazy gunner

Playing players out of their position has sort of stifled them so far..I am not too concerned about ANM he will do a job where ever.. Reis Nelson on the other had kinda excites me..I am not sure if Eden Hazard was played as a wing back early in his career he would be the same player today AMN will not excel at LWB but I am sure he will be okay at RWB or DM.. All we want is to play players in positions where they can excel and gain confidence at a time when they are vulnerable….A very… Read more »


In order to have a bright career you cannot have fragile confidence!


“A very bad game in an unfamiliar position can end their footballing career!”

That’s very interesting, could you give some examples please?

crazy gunner

Chambers had a very bad game against Montero of swansea and as far as I am concerned he never quite recovered …he had to go to M’boro to show he is still a defender that can be relied on..


The bad game was at right back which is the only position he had played in the first team for Southampton. When he was keeping Clyne out of the team. It was Wenger that moved him to centre back




I think I understand what he’s saying. In games of this sort of caliber, it will be good to play them in the positions they are most comfortable with. It will help their confidence cuz they are still so young and fans often really don’t care if a player plays badly before they start rating them poorly. It’s also important though that they become adaptable and I think that should be the focus at the youth leagues. I have no fear for AMN cuz he has been with the first team for a while but the others need to be… Read more »


Rubbish players can play large parts of there careers in different positions look at Gareth Barry he was LB for a long time before playing in the middle or John Barnes from Winger to CM or Both Valencia and Young for Man U. At a young age they may play different positions to where they end up playing in there future career.


Lauren was a DM and was shifted to right back too 😉


Lauren had played wing back in Spain, Wenger tried him right mid and centre mid but neither really worked before he was moved to full back.


I am pretty sure that at this age you have only a rough idea at which area you wanna play, so there is still flexibility on the path a player will follow. Unless you are a GK

Atwaata Grinestone

And how many world class football players hast thou coached, pray tell?


Some youngster will play from the start, like Ainsley, Reiss and those we ve seen latelly and I believe all the others will have a go based on the score.


Considering our brutal schedule over the Christmas and new year period, I think we should rest more senior players as we approach knock-out stage qualification. This is the perfect competition to develop young players.


I’d really like to see Nketiah get some time on the pitch today, hopefully we’re in a comfortable enough position for him to get on relatively early in proceedings.


Holding Per (C) Mustafi
AMN Elneny Wilshere Josh Da Silva
Theo Nelson
Giroud will do just fine


Vlad Dragomir – sounds like a name from game of thrones

Still makes a change from when every youth player seemed to have a double barrelled name
Emmanuel – Thomas
Sanchez – Watt
Etc etc


it will be a nice day out for them