The Arsenal and USA under 21 international starlet Gedion Zelalem first started to draw widespread notice and acclaim from Arsenal fans and the football world in general over two years ago, when he impressed during the 2013 tour of Asia, drawing comparisons with the former Gunner Cesc Fabregas with his ability and style of play.
But the German born player of Ethiopian descent did not see his first team career take off like the Spaniard´s had and an injury early in the following season did not help. He did make his senior debut in the FA cup in January 2014 and then his Champions League debut the following season.
It is fair to say, however, that a lot of us were expecting to see a lot more of him and I was starting to wonder whether he would be another young Gunner not to realise their early promise. Maybe Wenger, the Arsenal coaching staff and Zelalem himself thought the same because he was loaned out to the Scottish club Rangers last month and so far it seems to have been the ideal choice.
The 18-year old arrived at the Glasgow giants with a bang, claiming two assists in his first game and he has been a regular starter ever since. As reported by Metro, his new club are delighted with him and the manager as well as their fans are predicting a brilliant future for him with Arsenal.
The Rangers boss said, “Gedion was first-class again, kept the ball so well, keeps it moving.
“He finds the pockets of space – I’m delighted.”
Some might question the value of him playing in the Scottish second division but what he will learn there is to battle and handle a physical challenge. Also, despite their recent troubles, Rangers are a massive club with a huge and demanding following and Zelalem needsw to be able to handle that pressure when he comes back. The report shows some tweets from the Rangers fans and one of them really struck me as good news for Arsenal.
It said, “Zelalem coming out his shell. And i am loving it. #Rangers”
Does this reveal why we had not seen more of the youngster over the last couple of years, and also why his move north was the perfect one for his career?