Arsenal youngsters came of age in cup battle

Arsenal vs West Brom match review by Ash

Arsenal travelled to West Bromwich to face the Baggies in what was expected to be a highly contested League Cup tie. The game certainly did disappoint however as it was overall quite a flat game, however in the end thankfully the Gunners managed to come away with a win after both extra time and penalties.

It wasn’t a good game, nor was it easy to watch, however the final result is all the matters and after having to go through both 90 minutes and the extra 30 minutes of football, it all came down to a classic, nerve biting penalty shootout.

Arsenal had taken the lead with a coolly finished right footed Thomas Eisfeld goal, as the German showed why Arsene Wenger should include him more in his plans. Eisfeld himself then when quiet and it wasn’t long before West Brom hit back, with a goal from the Baggies coming just 10 minutes later in the 71st minute of the game.

It was then back and forth from that point on, with real end to end stuff but unfortunately no goals to settle it. Wenger then made a few more substitutions bringing both Olsson and then Bellerin on. Both players massively impressed me and along with the other substitute Chuba Akpom, I’m confident all three young players will make it with Arsenal.

Nothing much happened in the extra time period, with Bendtner failing to really make anything happen for himself. The Dane had provided the assist for Eisfeld’s goal, but with little service from the wings and Bendtner himself having a little run in with the post of the West Brom goal, there wasn’t much else the striker did on his debut.

It then came down to penalties, which are easily one of the most nerve racking things as a football fan, however thankfully after going 2-1 down and 3-2 down, Arsenal managed to pull it back to 3-3 with Akpom and then went on to win it 4-3 with a nicely slotted finish from Spanish left back Nacho Monreal. All in all it wasn’t the best game to watch however it’s the final result that matters and at the end of the day, we now must focus on Swansea in the League and then in the longer run, Chelsea in the Capital One Cup 4th round. COYG!

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36 thoughts on “Arsenal youngsters came of age in cup battle

  1. John Legend

    Come of age??? Oh please! Not yet! They were impressive. They are confident lads and will make a good squad in some years time. As of now, just let them grow!

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    1. NY_Gunner

      @John Legend
      I agree. Just let them grow. I think thy should be utilized not only in the Capital cup matches, but in mid/lower table team matches also.

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      1. Tidan2

        I think that would work very well for the midfield positions because as long as you are surrounded by experience it has a much smaller impact on the overall game if a youngster is playing badly then if they were the main ST, a defender, or the goalie.

        If the PL side is in the lower half then we should play 1 midfield position as a youngster for 45 minutes, if we are going well then sub him for another youngster, if not then sub him for experience to get the result. That will speed up the integration process and keep us much fresher for the main matches. Zelalem, Eisfeld, Olsson, Ryo, Gnabry, Akpom and some others can all hold their own with good players around for 45 minutes, i’m certain of it. Gnabry and Ryo were far better in the PL match than in the cup match.

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        1. NY_Gunner

          @Tidan2
          I would even go out on a limb and suggest for the Norwich and/or Palace matches, throw in 3 young gunz ( striker, winger, midf) in a 442 partnered with Oz, Jack, Rambo or Santi, with Nick up top to rest Olivier…

          I know it sounds a bit maverick, but for now,these guys are our bench so it’s best to get them battle hardened and hone their skills because we have a long tough road ahead of us…

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  2. Adelaide Gooner

    There’s a long way to go for the youngsters but to win against the odds in a shootout will give them enormous confidence. They’re not there yet but they’re on their way. Playing at home against the Chavs will be a great experience

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  3. napersie

    OFF TOPIC:
    Bedtner trying out the Zlatan hair style. After all those years, Nik is still trying to emulate Zlatan… From 2009:
    “In about three years, I will be better than Zlatan. He is older than me and has now reached his peak as the top scorer in Serie A – but I have a plan, I believe in it and I am ready.
    “Next season, I can finally make my breakthrough and then I still have two years to become better than Zlatan – and I will.
    “By then I will be close to my peak and will be able to look upon myself as one of the world’s greatest strikers.”

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    1. AlmiR

      personaly, he can be like zlatan, but pure talent isnt enough, he must work on his stamina and body, when you look at ronaldo, you can see 80 kg of muscles, not case with bendtner!!!

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  4. GunnerCPH

    I don’t think anyone came of age, to be honest. The outstanding players for me were Jenkinson (my MOTM), who was everywhere and never caught out of position, the central defenders, who looked solid keeping it simple, cutting out Vermalen’s forward runs and just keeping the shape intact and finally to some extent Bendtner who created the goal and worked for the team.

    All the youngsters looked to be out of their depth, all making several stray passes, showing bad decision making and lack of mutual understanding.

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    1. SB

      they were both alright, gnabry was the real let down. Ryo should start over gnabry on the weekend

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  5. LDockers

    It was a very poor game entertainment wise, no real chances being created espeically by us but i put this down to a lack of expereinced creative players, had Rosicky been fit or Chamberlain and they featured im sure we would of created a lot more. The team we put out battled hard, Eisfeld wasnt as effective as i thought he would be but his goal was class which shows his promise. Gnabry works so hard, he was up and down the flank defending and attacking, he lost the ball a few times trying to break forward but i love his direct approach and for an 18 year old he looks a very good player, he was shattered come extra time. Miyachi didnt have too good a game, few poor passes but he showed his ability as a winger, very quick and can be tricky and hes not a bad crosser of the ball but his decision making needs some work, he gets a bit lost not knowing whether to cross or pass but he will get better, his work rate defensively espeically in the first half was impressive. Bellerin and olsson did a decent job when they came on, Bellerin being a natrual RB being played CM had me worried but he looked assured and im looking forward to his progress. Jenkinson and Mert were outstanding, Verm and Monreal also solid, for the first time in years i can say our defence is top class, good replacements for all players there and they always look like they will make it difficult for the opponents

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    1. LDockers

      forgot Akpom, he got us going in extra time and broke forward well, reminds me a bit of Welbeck when he was trying to break through into the united set up as an 18 year old. If he keeps it up he will be a class player to have

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  6. davidnz

    They are not there yet, true. But they all made great strides. Miyaichi played 120 mins against a Premier league side, which is amazing considering his minimal role in the past. Bendtner played 120 mins after 2 years away and he even scored a penalty. Gnabry played 120 mins, Hayden and Eisefeld played 80 mins and Eisefeld scored. Add in the 30 min spells of the subs, a win, no injuries ( I hope ) and resting the A squad it was a very successful game. This team can now be used for any soft cup games and most of these youngsters will do well coming off the bench against the weaker sides in the EPL games. A job very well done.

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  7. Gda Keya

    That was a vry big risk bt luck is chasing us thz season that’s why m confident Gunners wil lift silverware Gnabry was overconfident & selfish always wanting to impress which didn’t work Eisfield wil b the nxt Ozil(when he grows up ofcourse) Nxt game only utmost 3 youngsters should be included Go Gunner go!

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  8. mark

    Didn’t see the game, but 120 mins + penalties is great experience for all the players, not least the younger ones trying to break into the first team.

    Good solid result, so well done the lads!

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  9. Billyk

    Job well done by the players last night – a bit lucky the gamble to not take any seior replacements (bar the partly injured Flamini) paid off. Bendtner showed glimpses – his pass to Eisfeld was brilliant, however, his miss/delay to allow the defender back was even more impressive. Therefore I would have Akpom (after a good performance by him) higher in the pecking order ’til January, then replace the Dane for a quality second choice ST. The next round looks exciting, think Wenger will continue to rotate the squad a bit, but he will also take the competition seriously. In an interview with the BBC he pointed to the return from injury of lots of first-teamers as a reason for the Chelsea game to be ‘interesting’. So I expect more experience in that line up, particularly up the pitch, mixed in with the youth players.

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  10. Gunnerforlife

    Gnabry didnt play even 10% the way he played against Stoke…he disappointed the most.

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  11. Mo1

    people on here saying “let youngsters play against lower table teams” Did u watch the Man city vs Cardiff?????

    There is no Easy game in this league your talking as if Arsenal have won an abundance of trophies these past few years. Be realistic every game is a must win or draw atleast, Experience is essiential. The youngster will get thier time if they are good enough, at this moment in time only 2 possibly 3 are ready to play the odd mins here and there as subs not start games be it a big team or small.

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    1. Tidan2

      you say experience is essential, how do these players get experience then? Being subbed in for 10 minutes at the end of a match 10 matches a season doesn’t do nearly as much good as one single starting performance for 70 minutes. Gnabry proved a youngster can start, play well, and we will still win a match.

      Also, all this talk of youngsters is only because we have so many injuries, when those players come back these youngster won’t get any chances so they need to get them now, then they will have a more realist view on what is expected at the next level and can use that knowledge to train harder until they get another chance.

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    2. NY_Gunner

      @Mo1
      And some on here are talking about buying young players from other teams, in Jan.
      F**k Jan. We ain’t even into Oct yet. Why burn out our game winners when we can use our young gunz to take up some of the slack. We need them to do what they’re paid for, to help win matches.

      Last nights match may have not been the most entertaining to watch. But if you looked close enough, it showed that the right mix of youth and experience can and will get the job done…

      In case you’ve forgotten.

      We are The Arsenal…

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  12. T-shirt

    lol,i enjoyed the game though,it was fun watching the youngsters attack and defend,i think ryo helped in tidying up the loose balls,he was always right there at the right time,i couldnt help but frown each time wenger brought in a youngster on the pitch cos the other fans at the pub were laughing their hearts out,but at the end,these youngsters held their own,it was a joy to watch.

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  13. Tobiloba

    I saw HAYDEN last night and this guy really played his heart out.He was so strong on and off the boy.Training and playing with senior players will make him better and better.He reminds me of Sol Campbell and Kolo Toure.

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    1. Tidan2

      He totally deserved a red for that tackle though, haha, did he forget to look at the ball when he went in? He was getting there first easily and then he went ahead and missed the ball completely! I liked his enthusiasm even though he was getting my heart going.

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  14. Twig

    Miyaichi needs the same advice that was given to Ramsey: KEEP IT SIMPLE! Miyaichi should concentrate on giving the simple pass for now and lifting up his head. When he’s confident he can try the more audacious stuff. He’s still a young chap though. What I really liked about his game yesterday was that he stay WIDE. Unlike Cazorla and Wilshere who always drift inside. If he works hard, simplifies his game a bit, it will happen for him.

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    1. Ks-Gunner

      twig to be honest Ryo needs a diff treatment to Ramsey…no there is no need to change his style….it his natural ability to be selfish and Arsenal needs get the best out of this talent and mold him into a loaner a pure winger….instead of slowing down the game and play a back pass….he has to learn to use his advantages to the fullest by taking players on and creating space to cross or shoot…

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      1. Twig

        At the moment he’s not able to take players on. Yesterday, we lost the ball too many times through his poor passes and crosses. He got into great positions in the box 18 as well, on SEVERAL OCCASIONS, but didn’t do much with the ball. If he keeps it simple, he could be more effective. Needs to shake off his injury problems as well. He could be a top player.

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      2. Uche Edochie

        What is lacking in Miyachi’s game is his lack of understanding of our pass and move game. He is always trying to take on defenders in tight corners even when he has the option of passing to his team mate, moving away from the opponent and asking for the ball back. In modern football, you only dribble when it is absolutely necessary otherwise you will lose the ball regularly and get fouled a lot. That is part of what is happening to wilshere now. He hangs onto the ball for too long and always tries to dribble his way out of trouble whereas he can pass his way out of a tricky situation tiki taka style.

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  15. Mo1

    @tidan2,
    So we give the younsters a start for 70min or so and if we lose thenwhat??
    the Wenger out brigade will be in full force “why are we playing kids etc” Wenger this wenger that. Il have you know that 10mins here and there plus carling cup games is Invaluable, just remember these youngs boys are still learning the intensity of the reserves and a competitive game is Massive. Those who are naturally talented will make it the ones who are not simply will not Wenger will be able to see that as he has done for many a year.

    On gnabry i like him alot think he has massive potential and yes he can possible start the odd game but only as an emergency, We have to remember Arsenal have not won anything for the past 8 years which more then half i would say was transition as we couldnt afford to keep hold of our best players and that would cost any team never mind just Arsenal But this year i feel this squad if everybody is fit we have a strong chance of winning something.

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    1. NY_Gunner

      @Mo1
      At the moment, they are our bench players. Otherwise we risk burning out our game winners. We’re only 5 games in and need every and any player to step up and pitch in when called upon. These guys are hungry and could make a difference.

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    2. Tidan2

      reread my comment…

      I said play a youngster for 45 minutes and then sub him out if he isn’t playing well enough, I did not say play a youngster the whole match even if he is causing us to lose. I also said that 70 minutes is far more important to a players development than a bunch of 10 minute stints when the game is already won, my point is that although those 10 minutes of game time help plenty, you can’t compare that to the benefit of playing 45+ minutes at the start of a match when the game is still up for grabs

      Lastly, everybody is not fit, thats why we are having this discussion, I wouldn’t expect us to start any youngsters if we had all 10 of our second team fit because they would be getting the game time, but right now we have 3 of our second team fit and 2 games every week so throwing in a youngster to relieve tiredness and give experience seems like a pretty smart plan.

      Let me also add that we are generally weaker in the first half so its the ideal time to put on a young guy who is hungry to prove himself when normally we would be a little more on the back-burners anyway.

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