Could Emile Smith Rowe be considering his Arsenal future after England snub? (Opinion)

Emile Smith Rowe fought his way into contention for the England senior team with a thoroughly impressive opening few months of the campaign before losing his first-team spot to Gabriel Martinelli, and he has now been snubbed for Gareth Southgate’s latest Three Lions’ squad.

The midfielder was amongst the contenders for Arsenal Player of the Season before the emergence of his Brazilian team-mate, who took his opportunity with both hands after Emile Smith Rowe came out of the game with Manchester United in December with a knock.

Martinelli remained ahead of ESR in the pecking order for the remainder of the season, something that was hard to disagree with due to the former Ituano forward’s amazing form also, but Smith Rowe must be wondering how much playing time he is in line for next season with the likes of Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard and Gabi all in contention for his favoured roles (before considering the possible arrival of another potential forward also).

The 21 year-old is happy to reiterate his love for Arsenal, but he must have some doubts about his role in the side, especially considering how consistent he was when he was in the side only to find himself benched for long spells.

I hope that his latest snub by Southgate won’t play on his mind, with him set to return to the England Under-21s for the upcoming internationals, as he is an important player for our present and future in my mind, and one we would severely regret losing if we our hand was forced.

Do you think ESR could have his head turned after his recent run on the bench? Will he be hurt at losing his England spot?


CALLING ALL ARSENAL FANS! Anyone who would like to contribute an Article or Video opinion piece on JustArsenal, please contact us through this link

Learn more about Arsenal’s proud history – Decade by Decade CLICK HERE to visit our new Arsenal History section

Tags Emile Smith Rowe England


  1. Then improve his fitness, he struggles to play 90 minutes. Improve himself defensively and track back.

    Play your way back onto the pitch; there were a few games Odegaard went invisible and we needed a spark.

    Competition improves the team, automatic starters should rarely be the case. No one in our current squad should be considered an automatic starter.

  2. We must have a pretty good squad, if we have players on the bench, who could be playing on the England team, or?

    1. Or some of our players on the bench make it onto the bench of the England team. Valuable subs for England like valuable subs for us.

  3. He just hasn’t done it week in week out over long enough to be trusted for England.
    Don’t let the fact he plays for us blind you.
    He’s in no way been in the top midfielders this year.
    If he was to come out and say he’s leaving over not getting into the english squad , well then let him go as he’s living in dream world at this stage of his development.
    That’s my 2 cent , im not saying he’s not been good , but just not quite there yet for me.

  4. He has been struggling with some health issues and need to stay fit. I agree with Durand.

    Don’t use your creative mind to make problems GooneP😁

  5. 10 league goals is no small feat – trouble is he scored most of them pretty early in the season and then tailed off. Not sure if it was fitness issues or lack of opportunities, but I’m not worried about ESR in the longer term. He needs a path to the first team, though and MA has to communicate that pathway to him, which I’m sure he has.
    ESR should always start in London derbies btw, he always seems to perform

  6. I dislike “what if, made up stories” from nothing more tangible than the writers imagination and so will limit my comments to just that!

    1. Hola chicos, para mi, Eddie is a great prospect/nuestro futuro, and must be given opportunities. Perhabs as our sub striker

  7. He has a long-term contract, so he’d likely try to take Xhaka’s position next season

    He isn’t consistent enough to be an LW and there are many talented LWs in England national team, so he’s got to excel in a central midfield position

    1. Didn’t he make being given the number ten shirt part of his most recent contract deal? Perhaps he still sees himself in that role rather than the left wing.

      1. He is obviously more suited for the CAM role, but we currently use 4-3-3

        He was assigned in Xhaka’s position in front of Partey a couple of times, but he couldn’t play as well as Xhaka there. Maybe he needs more games as a left mezzala

      1. Currently no, but perhaps he can be as good if he plays in that position more often

  8. I think he has fitness/health issues

    And Arsenal have been known for quite a long time for our not so great health and fitness teams

    But he’s still young. Give him time to be more consistent

  9. This is why the 4-2-3-1 makes sense for us. Neither Odegaard nor Smith-Rowe are CM’s or wingers

    1. I could see odegaard as a CM with a bit of work, although I know he’s played here a couple of times and not been great

  10. Pure speculation and even if he had a desire to go elsewhere, he is on contract until June 2026.

  11. I don’t expect him to struggle to contend with fellow whippersnappers for a place in the starting 11,hmmmm!!! What an atmosphere we are creating,”watch ur back cos ur mate is eyeing ur spot”.

  12. If he wants to leave he should go. He isn’t world class anyway. I’d prefer Nkunku.

  13. ESR is the joint Arsenal top Premier League goals scorer (101 with Saka from open play last season.
    Therefore, this should make him invaluable in Arteta’s Arsenal first team squad for next season’s campaign I will opin.
    Nevertheless, since ESR heath issue in the team that restricted him mostly to the bench just before the onset of the run-in matches last season had been a public knowledge in the football circle.
    ButI think and believe that the young Arsenal midfielder ESR will avail himself with the opportunity of the current end of season holiday brings to have whatever be his health issue treated to recover fully from it.
    So that he will be at 100% fitness level in the team in readiness for the club next summer campaign.

  14. it’s been a difficult season, in many respects, for ESR, as MA’s tactical negativity and unjustified overreliance on players like Ode and Xhaka, have left our most direct midfielder squarely on the bench for the start of far too many games…furthermore, he’s been asked to play in wider spaces, even though he serves us best more centrally, which doesn’t make sense or overly flatter him…now when he played out there originally, Tierney was playing most nights and bombing up the left, which provided him with the requisite protection and likewise allowed him to tuck inside and take on singular defenders in space, with no sideline help…just not a fan of ESR losing his gig to ODE, then likewise being shoehorned out wide, especially against those teams where a more direct-playing presence makes infinitely more tactical sense…the one saving grace of this whole affair, albeit selfish in nature, it’s one less player to concern ourselves about, injury-wise, when the ridiculous money-grubbing World Cup is played during the middle of the PL season

    1. Agree. Arteta favours Odegaard when all figures shows that ESR is the better player. ESR is a pure 10 who creates and scores. I wonder why he was suddenly dropped to the bench when he was on fire.

  15. My comments will definitely not be what “fans”, want to hear but ESR,.does not fit into Arteta’s plans or the “style” of football he wants his team to play. Smith Rowe is at his best when he is given a roving free style role playing one twos and propelling the ball forward.. He is also at his best when playing with Tierney and Saka. If Arsenal can get another similar minded creative, mobile mid fielder/ striker to add to this combination then both ESR and the team will thrive, however in this current set up he is shackled both in his position and what his manager expects from him. Provided he is fit 2022-23 should be ESRs make or break season at Arsenal. Beyond that, if things aren’t working for him at this club, I think he would look good in Newcastle’s stripes playing for Eddie Howe or even god forbid either for Klopp or the new manager at Manure.

    1. Wow, agree with you.

      But a keep saying we need an additional two to three midfielders and one should be very mobile

  16. ESR has two current problems.
    He is confidence player, so he needs to be played regularly, for a full match, especially with Tierney as full back. When he gets involved in the game, he makes good plays and his confidence soars (and he scores goals).

    But, when he is stuck out on the wing and Tavares plays. he might just as well stay on the bench for the service he gets.

    I cannot remember how many times I have said this, but ESR needs to get out of AFC ASAP, if he is to save his career.

    Arteta prefers Nellie, and since he is the manager at the moment, there is little ESR can do. What is worse, Arteta is liable to buy more forward players in the summer pushing ESR further down the pecking order.

    So, I hope that some sensible manager, like maybe Graham Potter, recognizes ESR’s ability, and snaps him up in the summer.

    Since Arteta doesn’t fancy him, maybe he will let him go on the cheap!!!.

    So much for Arteta’s vaunted bringing thru the Academy players.

    Reese Nelson, another deemed failure, played in the Europa League conference final on Wednesday.
    Joe Willock. when fit, is playing well for Newcastle.
    So, there might be hope for ESR if he can just get a move soon.

  17. Agree with you all the way JW. Want to see the kid helping the club to success, but with this current manager, it might be better for Smith Rowe to put of his own career first.

  18. he fell off towards the end of the season. his performances weren’t good enough. If he wants to stay at Arsenal then he knows what he has to do and that is fight for his place in the team.

Comments are closed

Top Blog Sponsors
JustArsenal Top Ten UK Blogs