Wenger: We have to give young players a chance

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Ahead of Arsenal’s Carabao Cup quarter-final against West Ham tonight, Arsene Wenger has reiterated his belief that the club has to give academy players a chance when possible.

The League Cup has traditionally been the way we’ve done that, but the Europa League this season has seen the likes of Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Reiss Nelson and Joe Willock appear frequently, while young striker Eddie Nketiah caught the eye with a two goal salvo in the last round against Norwich.

The club have made moves to keep this batch of youngsters together, with Nketiah, goalkeeper Matt Macey and midfielder Ben Sheaf all signing new deals.

They’re all likely to be part of tonight’s squad to face the Hammers, and the manager is enthused by their potential.

“It’s a very exciting bunch of young players,” he said.

“They went recently to Manchester City and won in a convincing way and I made that decision a few months ago to try and keep them at the club because I believe they all have futures at the club.

“It is very important for Arsenal to continue giving chances to young players we educate here.”

The fact that Maitland-Niles has done enough in his cup games to convince Arsene Wenger he’s ready for Premier League playing time should convince others that these games are a real chance to stake their claim at Arsenal.

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20 Comments on "Wenger: We have to give young players a chance"

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Ravi

Bring on Eddie!!

shokim

Say what you will about Wenger but at least he’s a PL manager who’s willing to give young players a chance. Don’t see many PL managers doing that.

gooner

To be fair to them, their jobs hang on their results. To some a spell of 10 games can decide if they have a job or not

Nick

Really? A lot of teams play kids in the league cup and by doing so have devalued a Wembley final competition! How many of our top talented kids get a chance in competions Wenger actually values? Bellerien, Iwobi? Wilshere and Cole over 22 years! When he does give a kid a chance it’s never in the position they excel in its like AMN he plays them out wide as a wide midfield or wing back ! You don’t train a carpenter by making him lay bricks or worse mix up mortar ! This reputation he has of being a chance giver to kids is unwarranted and overhyped!

HaK

AMN actually started of as a wide midfielder

wezzza

The organisations that run the game are the ones that have devalued the cup competitions

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Yeah unlike Wenger, the rest of the managers don’t work on a 0 accountability of results basis. If they play youngsters and lose they get the boot.

That being said, its the league fking cup. Play all youngsters. Who gives a damn.

Arse City Blues

There was a young man named Eddie, who looks up to legends like Freddy, if he pulls up his socks, he’s our fox in the box, let’s play him and see if he’s ready

Dreamcast

I feel your rhymes buddy.

Pedant

‘Give Reiss a Chance’ at Christmas time.

ramgooner

I hope Ben Sheaf starts alongside Calum and Rob. He is the one that excites me the most.

ronaldo

well, arsenal are always bigging up the youngsters, so play them all tonight and lets just see how good they really are, then will will know how good they are

Kingsley

The comments on here and on the Facebook page (for the same article) are complete opposites. You can tell that nobody read the article on the FB page and just resorts to “Wenger out” or “should have given Joel Campbell/Gnabry a chance”.

FB and Twitter really are toxic platforms.

sambo

Shhhh we try keep that a secret around here, we don’t want them migrating to the website lol

daniel

hope to see Willock and Nelson start tonight, nketiah to come on at some point, Macey was actually really good in that last league cup game, but im guessing Ospina comes back in

Mark

The biggest advantage with us playing in the Europa league this year is it gave the young players a chance to gain experience and to earn Wenger’s trust in them for big moments like calling upon AMN for the last two matches, doubt Wenger would have done that had he not seen the production and composure of AMN in the Europa league matches.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Winning for next season CL is the biggest advantage on my opinion.

ronaldo

wenger only trusts ozil, ha, ha, ha

carter

anyone know of a foreign channel showing the game tonight, i see its not on uk tv, prefer mobdro to streams

LusBoaMuerte

Freeze out Walcott, Welbeck, Coquelin and Ospina and give all their playing time to Nketiah, Nelson, Maitland-Niles and Macey.

Persisting with overpaid, underperforming mid/late-career mediocrity when we have talented academy graduates who are more than capable of taking on genuine squad roles is perplexing. Wenger’s become quite conservative in his old age.

Invest the saved wages in genuine starting XI players.