Marcelo Flores came to Arsenal in a very roundabout way. The Gunners U23 midfielder was born in Canada and is the son of a Mexican footballer. He was strangely talent-spotted by Ipswich in the Cayman Islands, while his father was managing the Ladies team.
He played in the Ipswich youth teams for three years until being spotted by Arsenal in 2019. He has since improved in leaps and bounds and has even played in the full Mexico national side as a substitute. Also he was this week named as Number 48 in the Top 50 list of promising youngsters. At Number 24 was Charlie Patino, who has already made his full debut for the Gunners this season.
The Arsenal Under-23 coach boss Kevin Betsy has been talking to The Athletic about Flores. “You have to be adaptable when you play for Arsenal,” he said. “You have to be able to receive the ball in tight spaces, play wide, play inside and he can play off all four positions: No 7, No 11, No 10 — and he’s also played as a No 9 at times too.
“His work rate out of possession is excellent. He’s had to work very hard with that. He’s a very creative player, a natural attacking player and what you find with those types of players is they like it when they have the ball. When they don’t have the ball, sometimes they can take long to react, but he’s improved that area of his game tenfold in the last two years of his development and that is great to see.”
He sounds like a typical flexible Arsenal winger by that description. With Arteta’s policy of bringing through Academy players in the senior squad, could we see Flores make his debut very soon?
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