Can Iwobi meet his Arsenal targets this season?

Alex Iwobi JustArsenalThe Nigerian international Alex Iwobi was promoted to Arsenal’s first team at the beginning of last season, and he was unusually given a fast track into the starting line-up.

For most of the first half of the season he was a regular starter but despite getting 3 League goals and 3 assists in 18 appearances (and 8 as sub), Wenger didn’t think he was contributing enough to keep his place when the boss changed our formation to 3-4-3 and he was sent back to the U23s.

Wenger brought him back this season but he has still only made 3 appearances with a return of 2 goals and 1 assist so far, including one against Brighton at the weekend. Is this a sign of large improvement for the 21 year-old?

Le Prof is hoping to see a lot more from the youngster in this campaign. “I think he’s a kind of player who has a good availability,” Wenger said. “He helps you a lot to get out of pressure when you are in a build up game and creates spaces.

“What you want from him is final balls and goals as well. A player like him must score 10 goals and he must as well give between six and 10 assists and that’s what I want from him.”

So is Wenger warning Iwobi that he needs to up his game to retain his place? And is this a realistic target for Alex?



  1. Who said Arsene can't do grime? says:

    So glad Iwobi has replaced Ozil. No coincidence that our good form has coincided with the uninterested Ozil being dropped.

    1. jon fox says:

      I am a fan of Alex Iwobi though he clearly needs more self confidence(a bit like the “attitude” Dele Alli has, though not the nasty side of Alli) Regarding Ozil, he is hugely gifted but through a weak character is largely wasting his gifts by laziness. Walcott too suffers from this laziness but without most of Ozil’s talent. I cannot understand why lazy players are allowed to stay at clubs so long when they are largely unproductive. Ox too was lazy and thankfully we got good money for a player who at 24 will not get much better. In my long 60 years experience of attending Arsenal and general football watching, no true universally regarded great player has been lazy AND had a stellar career. People widely regarded Matt Le Tissier as lazy , which he was and he gained only seven England caps, despite being one of the most truly gifted players of his generation. Conversely, the likes of Kevin Keegan and our own much loved Pat Rice worked their socks off and had stellar careers , though less talented than Le Tissier. Ozil fits into this category; huge God given talent but a lack of fight. Personally, I would always sell lazy playrs; this is why I have wanted Walcott gone for most of his Arsenal career and was glad to see Ox leave. We should sell Ozil for what ever we can get, since idle players always let you down and you cannot hope to win a title with them in your side. Fergie, Mourinho, Klopp, Conte, Simeone and Guardiola, even Pochettino don’t carry lazy players . Nor did our own GEORGE GRAHAM. That is why they all won trophies( with the single exception of Pochettino, and long may that remain so in his case!)

      1. soccerboy says:

        @jon fox. “In my 60 years experience of attending arsenal and general football watching”. A long time arsenal fan.

        1. jon fox says:

          Well, actually I started supporting us in 1956 and started attending in 1958, attending home and away from 1966 and as season ticket holder for 36 years. It was two shillings( 10 pence) to stand in the North Bank when I started. I make Wenger look like a newbie and we oldies know Arsenal was world famous well before Wenger was even born. I remind those who are young that Arsenal was here long before Wenger and will be here well after he and all of us are pushing up daisies. Perspective helps, don’t you think!

  2. Sue says:

    I can’t see Iwobi matching ozil’s goals & assists although I’d like to be proved wrong. Was surprised he started yesterday, but glad he scored! If I’m being honest though I’m not his no1 fan

  3. Omar Khadine says:

    Every footballer has the potential to become a top player like George Best , Pele, Messi, Ronaldo Neymar Aguiero Thierry Henre, Drogba etc. Specially the West African players with their “fast-twitch” muscle make up for fast pace ! Clearly it is nothing more than regular determined tenacious ‘practice’ to master the craft and techniques and then being able to consistently apply the ‘learned knowledge’, anticipate movements and move to positions in relation to where the ball is likely to be given what is happening on the field….! all these factors when drilled in to ‘one’s football brain’ day in day out every week on the training ground ”’ then you can be an amazing player. What amazes is that a professional footballer is incapable of hitting a dustbin at six yds.! Iwobi lacks confidence and accuracy for starters..!

    1. jon fox says:

      Frankly , I don’t understand what you mean by West African players and their “fast twitch” muscle. All pro sportsmen/ women have muscles that react fast. That is one reason they play top level sport. Your comments sound somewhat racist to me, as you talk about West Africans only. Not East Africans then? Or Europeans? Or any other continent? Care to explain OR BE LABELLED A RACIST?

  4. Ivan says:

    I am a fan of Alex Iwobi and If he is given enough game time think he will be one hell of a good player. Having these targets is good too.

  5. Liam says:

    We might be on a winning streak without Ozil in the team but in my eyes we would still be on it with him and would have beat Chelsea had he been in the team, as all we missed was abit more creativity against them

    1. Sarmmie says:

      And what makes you think we wouldn’t have conceded had it been he was in the team?, do you know that the moment we lose the ball with ozil in the team, it’s as if we’re playing ten against eleven?

  6. Pablo Picasso says:

    So much negative energy on this site lately. Even when we are winning a game one would think we are Crystal Palace or something. Cheer up Gunners. This place is becoming toxic.

    Alex is still young and with game time and the younger players coming behind him, I believe he will continue to do even better so people should lay off his back if he makes a mistake or 2 every now and then. Accuracy, positional sense, confidence, etc come with game time and support from all.

    Wonder why teens from other leagues do better than those in the EPL, less pressure on them.

    1. Lix says:

      You’re right. Most times when I read the comment section I go back to check if I am in Justcrystapalace page

  7. jon fox says:

    Clearly, judging by the comments and likes/dislikes on this site, most Gooners are firmly on Iwobi’s side. My take is this: A talented but still mentally immature player, as his behaviour in TV interviews shows. He seems to feel lucky to be in the side but since he has the talent he needs to believe much more in his own ability and not be overawed by playing alongside the likes of Sanchez, Kos, Ramsey and those with far more experience. In my opinion, what Alex quickly needs is a dose of Dele Alli’s self belief, bordering on arrogance. He is clearly a far more modest , nicer person than Alli. But we do not need well rounded sons to marry our daughters but young talented footballers(which he is) with great self belief and a bit of devil. This niceness is holding him back and he needs a bit, or quite a lot, actually, of “attitude”. This will help him show his undoubted talent more often. All the greats have enormous self belief and to my way of thinking that is what he most lacks. Hopefully increasing age and experience will provide it. Hope it comes very soon though. You may think this is undeserved criticism but I DO believe in his ability and want him to believe in it as much as most of us do. At present, he does not.

    1. MalcomX says:

      Can someone please send this to Iwobi? He needs it more than the fans ever will.

  8. The barrel says:

    Loam please be realistic, how many time did we beat the big 5 opponents when Ozil is in the team? Don’t be fooled by the name check the contribution. Iwobi is still young don’t put too much pressure on him.
    Sue, who said Iwobi should mach Ozil’s assist record? Wenger said 10 goals and 6 to 10 assists. Wenger knows that if he can meet that target, it’ll be an improvement

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