Arsenal supporters have been keeping a keen eye on Reiss Nelson’s development at Hoffenheim this season, but there is reason to suggest that they should be looking closer to home at a talent residing within the youth set-up.
With six goals to his name from nine appearances in the Bundesliga it is easy to see why Nelson is commanding such enormous hype in north London. The extent of his development has even forced supporters to urge Unai Emery to bring him back to the club in January, despite the proficiency of the first-team under the Spaniard’s leadership.
The development of talent from the academy is something which continuously commands attention from the supporters, so it shouldn’t be too long before they have another wonderkid to salivate over, namely Folarin Balogun.
The 17-year-old has been finding the back of the net with remarkable consistency at youth level, with a record of 17 goals from 21 games in the U18 Premier League providing the statistical evidence to suggest he is destined for a bright future in the game.
Balogun has made the step up to U23 level already but he has struggled to score with the same level of regularity, although it must be considered that the gulf in class will take some getting used to for the aspiring centre-forward.
Both the development of Balogun and Nelson indicate that Arsenal’s academy are bringing through a generation of talent who are brimming with potential, and the pair of wonderkids could yet link-up in Arsenal’s first-team.
Nelson’s ability to drive beyond his opponent and make an impact in and around the penalty area will ensure that Balogun is provided with goal scoring opportunities, should they find themselves playing in the senior squad in the future.
Either way it’s an incredibly exciting time for the Gunners faithful with such a vast array of talent emerging through the ranks, and Balogun is certainly one to watch for the future.
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