Iwobi’s surprised everyone, says former coach!
Iwobi had a rise to fame last season, almost coming out of the blue to make an instant impact on the first team. Although we still have a while to go until the new season kicks off again, Arsenal fans will already have the upcoming season in mind and so will be wondering what role Iwobi has to play.
Alex Iwobi, an Arsenal youth team graduate, has been with the club since his younger years and has grown with the guidance of Arsenal all the way. Iwobi has developed playing the Arsenal way and has Arsene Wenger’s style infused into him, which is why he has become such a big hit with Le Prof. Iwobi has never spent any time out on loan, but has instead developed under the Arsenal youth team coaches, including the Youth academy and Arsenal Under 21s. One of the club officials that has been watching Iwobi’s career unfold from Young Gunner to Arsenal first teamer, is Andries Jonker, the Arsenal academy coach.
Jonker stated that the 20-year-old has surprised everyone with his step-up into the senior squad, saying “He’s the example of a good player who has not been identified by anybody as a potential first-team player. Many, many people seem to think you have to recognise an under-nine as a potential first-team player. When you spend a long time in youth football, you understand that you will never know.”
Going into the new season Iwobi has been handed the number 17 shirt, showing that his progression into the first team squad has been fully completed. Iwobi is now on first team duties and will be looking to have the same kind of impact next season, as the former owner of the number 17 shirt, Alexis Sanchez, has had with the club. Obviously Iwobi is nowhere near Alexis’ ability and to put such expectation and pressure on a player is what can break them and their future prospects, so it’s important to not expect too much from the youngster just yet. I think the pressure may have gotten to Iwobi a little last season because even though he had a great first couple of games for the club, in the latter stages of last season, his form did dip a little and he wasn’t having the same impact in the team as he did beforehand. The most important thing to remember is that Iwobi is still only 20 years old and still has plenty more to learn before he is the finished product.
If Iwobi manages to give the fans a burst of excitement like he did last season then there is no doubt that he will soon become a favourite of the fans and great things will be expected from the young Gunner for many many years to come.