I read a lot of comments on Just Arsenal saying that Mikel Arteta has no interest in promoting young players into the Arsenal first team, but that seems to fly in the face of reason for me. Bukayo Saka has shot to stardom in the last 12 months and Emile Smith-Rowe has also been a revelation dince his debut against Chelsea last Boxing Day.
The boss also convinced Folarin Balogun and Athur Okonkwo to sign new contracts and have been promoted to the first team squad as well, and the fact that not one of Arteta’s incoming transfers were over 23 tells me that Arteta is definitely putting his faith into young players.
It looks like the next star to be coming through is going to be Charlie Patino, who has been making the headlines with a wonder goal against Man United U23s last week. Despite only being 17 he was named as captain against Swindow last week as well.
— Charlie Patino (@CharliePatino10) September 8, 2021
According to Charles Watts, the Arsenal expert, Patino is very highly regarded by Arteta, and expects the boss to give the youngster his debut in one of our cup games this campaign.
“There might be a chance in a couple of weeks’ time whenever the Wimbledon game is, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Patino on the bench for that one, given the way he’s started the season. I’m sure you’ve probably all seen the goal against United’s U23s on Saturday, lovely goal that sitting down Phil Jones and Dean Henderson on way to scoring that goal
“Look, Patino is very, very highly rated at Arsenal, Mikel Arteta really likes him. That’s why he’s been inviting him to train with the first team more and more. As far as I’m aware the plan for Patino at the moment it does not involve a loan, it is more of a straight into the first team. They think that by keeping him around, training around the first team he’ll learn more from that. The players really like him they’ve been impressed by him, the first-teamers, so you know it could be sooner rather than later.”
With starlets like Miguel Azeez, Danial Ballard and Tyreece John-Jules doing good things out on loan, it must mean a lot that Arteta has decided to keep Patino under his wing for the moment.
Well, have a look at this video of Patino’s skills from last season, and see if you agree he could be the next Young Gunner to hit the big time…