Hayden next Arsenal starlet to make it from academy?

Although Arsenal fans, players and manager will be disappointed to have been knocked out of the Capital One Cup at such an early stage, there were some real positives to take from the game against Southampton. At least it was a Premier League team that beat us, just like with Chelsea last season, and there is no shame losing to a strong and in form Saints team.

The return of Abou Diaby to the starting line-up for the first time in 19 months was obviously a great boost for him and the club, but I think perhaps the biggest positive for us was the performance of Isaac Hayden at centre back. The 19-year old from the academy actually outshone Calum Chambers, who is also 19 but has had much more big game experience.

Hayden was making only his second appearance in the first team but I thought he took it all in his stride and showed good strength, speed and ability on a really tough night. And the youngster is a versatile player as well, able to play central midfield which we all know is a position where Arsenal could do with more options.

Hayden spoke to Arsenal Player after the game, revealing how much he enjoyed his first game in front of the Emirates crowd and how it has given him a taste for more.

He said, “Despite the result, it was obviously fantastic to play at the Emirates. It’s the first time I’ve played in front of a home crowd which was good. I’ve been on the bench a few times so it was good to finally get on the pitch.

“It’s a great starter, a great first taste and you want more of it. That’s the aim, you want to be playing at the highest level of professional football that you can.

“It was a good learning experience for me tonight, playing against Graziano Pelle who’s a very good forward. It’s good for me and Calum, both being 19, to learn against such good quality opposition. Graziano’s a big strong guy but I did my best, that’s all I can do. Give 100 per cent each time I play for Arsenal.”

With the defensive problems currently at the club, Hayden may well get his wish to play more in the coming weeks and months. So Gooners, do you think this young Gunner could be the next player to break through from the Arsenal academy?

Tags Chambers Southampton


    1. Well, as he enjoys the injury spells of his older compatriots which gives him game time, he should know his time with injuries will come too. its kind of a culture and tradition.

        1. I think all the the arsenal injuries are not thaaaaat bad. They made us get wellbeck..and kalstrom.. players we would have never got. and the injuries give opportunity to the youth. so its good they(the youth) also pay back when their time comes. they should also get injured so that we get new players and the then youth also get some game time. It makes perfect sense to me, don’t know about you guys though, but I feel it makes perfect sense.

          1. I think I just cracked Wenger’s sly trick.
            It makes me feel grate since I am now a mind hacker 🙂 🙂 🙂 and sad since I know know the injuries are part and parcel of arsenal and without them the youth cant develop 🙁 🙁 🙁 🙁 🙁

        2. I think I just cracked Wenger’s sly trick.
          It makes me feel grate since I am now a mind hacker 🙂 🙂 🙂 and sad since I know know the injuries are part and parcel of arsenal and without them the youth cant develop 🙁 🙁 🙁 🙁 🙁

  1. I was unable to watch the game yesterday but from reading all the posts from after the game until now, it might have been a good thing. My regret though is a missed chance of seeing Diaby play again along with the up and coming youngsters.

  2. OT: I just don’t understand what Podolski offers to the team other than social media expertise. Seriously why didn’t we get a better LW or left footed player when there were a few available? Don’t hate the guy but he’s just collecting a paycheck and I’d rather keep Diaby over him…

    1. He adds depth. He might not always be a first choice starter, but in Capitol cup games he allows Ozil, Chamberlain, Welbeck etc. to take a rest.

      1. I understand the whole depth thing but along with that you need to perform as well when given the opportunity. I’m sorry yeseterdays game was probably the first game I missed of him playing since he’s been here and even though he started off good for us he’s seriously declining and that’s something we just can’t afford to keep facilitating. I mentioned Diaby because even with his chain of injuries he still manages to put in a decent shift… Social media can also be very distracting to a person as well.

      1. John cross. Injury to a glute muscle, but wenger thinks he should be back for the weekend. But you never know.

        1. Yeah just read it, he was a bit edgy so wenger didn’t risk Mert or gibbo, but both will be fine for south/north London scum.

  3. In other news, wenger said ” i want to try make diaby a defensive midfielder”. Say goodbye to kondogbia and carvahlo in January lads.

    1. His glass legs won’t last till January Bro.
      I really can’t imagine him in a pure DM role, running all around after players, tackling here and there, turning defense into attack fast and with precision. Nah!!!

    2. If he’s stay’s fit then forget kondogbia and Carvahlo, ten times better than them ‘when he’s fit’
      Can’t you guy’s remember the early Diaby days, the fit injury free, he was a real menace, a beast!

    3. To be a Dm you need to be a beast of a player. Put your body into situations no other player would. Diaby is the opposite of a true Dm.

      Wenger is a douche

  4. I like him. Its good he is only 19. However, I fear Arsene might not strengthen because of him. His old ways.
    Bringing in someone older, stronger and more experienced will help him and the team as a matter of fact.

    1. If we bring a new defender Hayden will not play again. In fact if there were 2 more CBs he wouldn’t have played even this Capital game!

  5. So we are hoping for academy players to fill up the gabs which could be fixed in the first place if Wenger would go out and buy the god damned players we needed to buy.

    1. But then you get people moaning about our youth policies..
      “arghh why did we let Landsbury go” ect ect
      justmoaning . com

    2. Why don’t you tell us then in your opinion what academy players are for? Maybe Barcelona should have signed Jesper Gronkjaer and allowed Leo Messi rot in the academy.

      1. Now stop being a silly billy, youth players i’d play them for shite opponents.
        Why are we at each others throat on this site ?

  6. Would have proffered us to have bought a top class experienced cb bit as we are start him with kos and bench per. Then a toss up between chambers and bellerin for rb. Thinknwe need to protect chambers as he’s cover for several postions. Lets hope for our sake kos and gibbs stay fit! At least until debuchy is back. What a mess!

    1. 3 months till debuchy is back from injury- lady luck will have to not just be on our side- but bend over an take it up the….

  7. Well, as he enjoys the injury spells of his older compatriots which gives him game time, he should know his time with injuries will come too. its kind of a culture and tradition.

  8. I hope everyone who was on their knees begging for the likes of rosicky podolski and campbell to get more playing time and come on at crucial moments becaust they’re “game-changing” players stfu now! You all saw how poorly they played yesterday! I’m not saying don’t back the players and its only 1 game, but don’t criticize Wenger for not playing them!

    1. How stupid. Wenger freezes them out, then decides to put them all in the starting line up at once without any preparation.

      Failuare according to some fa#gs like you are the players fault. A possible win, would mean Wenger is a genius.

  9. Off topic. Anyone seen the article in the sun about the “Model” with the three breasts lol
    She’s gonna regret that i think.
    Total recall awesome movie.

  10. La Liga has proper B teams. Would love to see the 2nd teams being allowed to play in the Championship. This way academy players will get more experience. Those U21 games are not that great for gaining experience.

  11. I would prefer Hayden than Chambers, this guy is a class act! he is typical British non nonsense, aggressive, tireless, fearless and overlapping defender. I just hope Wenger sees the same thing as me and you the writer of course!

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