Arsenal supporters in the Transfer Tavern are somewhat downbeat at present after seeing their side suffer two defeats to begin the new Premier League season.
Unai Emery was tasked with the remarkably difficult job of following on from long-serving boss Arsene Wenger, who saw his 22-year stint in charge of the Gunners come to an end at the conclusion of last season. And Spaniard Emery hasn’t made the best of starts after replacing the Frenchman in suffering defeats to both Manchester City and Chelsea, thus leaving the North London giants pointless heading into their London derby with West Ham this weekend.
As such, there are many despondent Gunners fans up and down the country at present, some of whom have taken to Twitter to suggest that young sensation Reiss Nelson should start against the Hammers on Saturday.
And while the results haven’t exactly been up to scratch so far, the performances have shown glimpses of promise, so to call for an 18-year-old, albeit a hugely talented one, to come in just three games into the season seems to smack of desperation.
The forward has come up through the ranks at the Emirates Stadium to make his senior debut for Arsenal back in the Community Shield last year, from which 15 further first team appearances have followed for the England Under-19 international.
But with just three of those coming in the Premier League, only two of which starts, it’s clear that the 18-year-old isn’t quite ready for regular football at top-flight level just yet – the fact he hasn’t been able to net in his 16 appearances in all competitions further underlines that, as well as the risk it would be to propel him into the first team this weekend.
Significantly, Nelson is competing for spots in the Arsenal side where Emery has a plethora of options to choose from, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Alex Iwobi, Mesut Ozil, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang given the nod by the Spaniard at Stamford Bridge last time out.
Add in Aaron Ramsey, Danny Welbeck, and Alexandre Lacazette, all three of which were on the bench against the Blues, and it’s clear that Nelson has some way to go before regularly appearing for the Gunners in the top tier – the aforementioned duo would surely be called into action before the 18-year-old.
Add in the fact that, despite suffering two defeats from their opening two games, Arsenal have actually shown glimpses of promise going forward and perhaps should have got something out of the game on Saturday, and completely shaking things up by bringing in a youngster would be a very strange move by the new Gunners chief.
Ultimately, calling for Nelson, despite how obviously talented the 18-year-old is, after just two games against top six rivals seems to smack of desperation.
Arsenal fans… what do you think? Let us know!