Martin Keown reckons that Joe Willock might have to leave Arsenal for a stint out on loan before he can be considered for first-team football.
The midfielder is an important part of Mikel Arteta’s plans at the Emirates, but he hasn’t been finding the minutes that his development needs.
Against Molde last night, he showed yet again why he is so highly-rated at the club, but there is no guarantee that he will play the next game.
This Arsenal team is a work in progress as Mikel Arteta was only named the club’s manager late last year.
The Spaniard has a lot of options and he cannot be blamed for not playing Willock enough.
However, Keown thinks that now is the time for Willock to play regular football after the midfielder impressed him against Molde.
He suggested that perhaps he will have to leave the club to join another team on loan before he will finally be considered good enough to play for the team regularly.
He told BT Sport via Sun Sports: ‘He wants to make the difference, he’s got great technique and drive and they need to make use of that for the first time.
‘He’s finding the extra gears and he’s maturing nicely. If he’s not getting the chances, is he going to have to go on loan?
“We don’t know. He’s going to let the manager decide.
‘The shape – they now want to play two, Elneny and Partey in that five. If he wants a third player Willock has to come into his thinking.
“He’s got to be one of the first on the list to put those two under pressure.
“We have to work out a pathway for him to get in that first-team, if he has to go on loan – he’s not far away from getting it right.”