Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang winning the Golden Boot on the final day of the season should have been what every Arsenal fan was celebrating when the full-time whistle blew against Burnley, but instead, it was a different striker everyone was praising.
Eddie Nketiah scored the third and final goal of the Gunners Premier League season, and his first ever in the league for the club in what many expect to be the first of many for the teenage striker, who is one of Arsenal’s most highly rated youngsters.
The 19-year-old attacker made a name for himself last season, scoring an extra-time brace against Norwich City to send Arsenal through in the League Cup and to put his name on the footballing map, and although Nketiah has been given more first-team chances since that breakthrough game, the stats haven’t exactly been promising reading.
Nketiah’s goal against Burnley was his first for the Arsenal first-team since the game against Norwich, and although the striker has impressed in games he has played in since then, goals just didn’t seem to come for the England U-19 international.
There is no doubt that Nketiah, who scored nine goals and assisted four in the Premier League 2 this season, has the talent to one day make it in the English top-flight, but as for now, it might be wise for Unai Emery to take a risk and loan out the striker for next season at a club where he is likely to get first-team minutes.
There were reports last January that the teenager was set to join Augsburg on loan for the remainder of the campaign, but Emery pulled the plug at the last minute to use Nketiah as coverage for Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette heading into the second-half of the season.
The Arsenal manager missed out on giving Nketiah minutes last season with pulling out of the loan deal, and for the upcoming window Emery can’t do the same and this time allow the teenager to get out there in the big wide world and play consecutive first-team minutes.
Nketiah is without question one of the standout players in Arsenal’s current generation of youth talent coming through, but his future could be in jeopardy of not kick-starting if he isn’t guaranteed minutes next season, and he won’t get that at a club with two of the best strikers in the country.
Arsenal fans, will Nketiah benefit from a loan-spell next season? Let us know!
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