Arsenal supporters have been absolutely thrilled by the performances of their key attacking players so far this season, and Reiss Nelson proved that the club have strength in depth last night with a standout cameo performance for England’s U21 side.
Boasting a reputation as one of Arsenal’s most promising wonderkids to emerge from their academy in recent years, Nelson made his debut for the England U21 side last night after impressing in the Bundesliga with Hoffenheim.
Arsenal allowed Nelson to embark on a season-long loan deal in the summer transfer window after he scored 9 goals from just 11 appearances for the reserves last season.
The 18-year-old made an instant impact in Germany as he scored on his debut after coming off the bench against Fortuna Dussledorf, and he has since added another goal to his tally from a further 2 appearances under Julian Naglesmann.
But Nelson took full advantage of his opportunity on the international stage last night as he came off the bench against Andorra to round off a sweeping move in injury time, taking his tally to 3 for the season.
In the aftermath of proceedings, BT Sport pundit Owen Hargreaves expressed his sheer admiration for Nelson’s explosive style of play following his immensely promising cameo performance:
“Wow. I mean explosive, the one word I just think he was so explosive. The thing I love about him is he’s ready to receive the ball.
“When he gets it the first touch is out of his feet and then he runs at the defender. That’s a good a 20 minute cameo I’ve seen from anyone in quite a while.”
Nelson’s performance certainly needs to be taken with a pinch of salt as he will seldom find himself up against a wounded opponent already down by 5 goals.
But take nothing away from Nelson, he showcased his raw talent and injected an exciting dynamic to England’s attack.
On the evidence of Nelson’s career so far and his early success in Germany it seems likely that opportunities will come his way under Naglesmann this season, and if he continues to climb on the upward trajectory he finds himself on he could be pushing for a place in Unai Emery’s starting eleven this time next year.
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