The Rise and Fall of Carl Jenkinson

The Rise and Fall of Carl Jenkinson by Dan Smith

Remember that famous picture a few years ago when the majority of Arsenal’s British players signed contract extensions on the same day? For marketable reasons they were pictured together as fans are more likely to identify to an English/Welsh youngster making the breakthrough then a foreigner. Why do you think the likes of Ramsey, Wilshere, Walcott and the Ox became the face of our Social media and Merchandise websites?

Of course, only two men from that photo are still at the Emirates with Rambo in his last season with us. If as expected there is no compromise between the Welshman and the club, the last man standing will be Carl Jenkinson. The irony being that the right back is the individual Arsenal have shown little interest in keeping. At one point they were willing to give Ramsey 200,000 a week to stay in North London, the Ox rejected a similar deal, Wilshere was willing to take a pay cut too stay, while Gibbs and Walcott had to move to rescue careers that were stagnating. Jenkinson is the example of how clubs can be just as ruthless when they don’t want you.

We often view players as greedy when they turn down thousands of pounds, questioning their loyalty when they make It clear they want to play elsewhere. Jenkinson is the opposite. This is a man clinging to his boyhood dream. He knows his life as a gunner has been on life support for years now. He knows the reality is his employers have been looking for buyers for numerous transfer windows.

Circumstances are the only reason he’s still a gooner. An injury meant he couldn’t be offloaded in the summer. Injuries ruined loan spells at West Ham and Birmingham. His time at the Hammers was part of his development. He originally did enough at Upton Park to get a contract extension. By the time he went to Saint Andrews, it was because no owner is going to pay 40,000 a week for a full back with two serious injuries behind him. If you were being paid such a sum of money till 2020 to play for the team you support, wouldn’t you stay? That means probably another loan deal in January where he would have to do something special to win over Unai Emery.

You must wonder where he’s at mentally. A youngster who once played in the Champions League and got an England Cap is now relying on a League Cup tie to prove himself. He might be so out of the picture that even a start against Blackpool is not a guarantee. It’s hard versus League One opposition to do too much to change his outlook. The odds are it could be his last ever Arsenal game. Yet I would have said that two years ago!!

Dan Smith


  1. Phil says:

    Jenkinson has proved to be mediocre at best in terms of ability but was unfortunate to have injuries so early in his career.But he apparently turned down signing for Palace at the beginning of last season as the offer didn’t match what he was being paid at Arsenal.It is that type of ambition that blights a career no matter if he is a lifelong fan or not.He was a no-risk buy at £1m but proved to be never good enough to be a first choice Arsenal player
    And the fact he has appeared for the full England team just highlights how cheap it is to win an England Cap with such limited ability

  2. gotanidea says:

    Poor Jenkinson, but he simply cannot cut it

    The only way to save his Arsenal career is by converting him into a CB, but I am afraid he is too old for a change in position

  3. Grandad says:

    Spot on Phil.

  4. Samuel Akinsola Adebosin says:

    With good fortunes on his side, Carl Jenkinson can still turn around his playing career at Arsenal from being on the fringes for seasons at the club to become a regular first team player and quell any exit soon from Arsenal. Injury suffered to him at West Ham while on a 2nd loan spell there had had him sidelined for a season initially. And since that injury episode he’s been unable to come back for Arsenal but has been hanging around at the club in the hope he’ll fully recovered from the former and latter injuries he has had and resumes playing for Arsenal again. But if he has truly recovered from his primary and secondary injuries and he’s fully match fit to play in the Carabao Cup for Arsenal against Blackpool tonight, then let Emery test him to see how match fit he is in a competitive match by giving him a 20 minutes appearance playing time to come from the bench in the 2nd half of the match and play against Blackpool.

  5. Innit says:

    he should have gone to Crystal Palace
    Better chance of success there than here

    He’s simply not good enough

  6. Trudeau says:

    I’ve always that he would make a better CB than left back. Maybe he will but it won’t be at Arsenal.

  7. jon fox says:

    Jenkinson just is not good enough for Arsenal. And yes, of course top level football is a business so we cannot carry passengers. He won’t be the first true fan player to come then find he is not good enough and have to leave. In the 70’s Jimmy Carter, another true fan, came and even scored the only goal in a win at Anfield, which I saw from the Kop (and so dare not openly celebrate)) but , though better than Jenks (he was a winger), he did not really make the grade. It happens but consider how few signings we (or any club ) make are actually fans of the club before signing. Or even after signing in some cases, eh Merse? Fact is most pro players by the time they are of quality to play in the first team cease to be primarily concerned about who they play for and think firstly of money, secondly of possibility to win silverware. This is natural and normal as players are not, generally speaking – as there are exceptions, obviously – fans of ANY club, in the way that fans ARE. THIS IS ONE REASON I ALWAYS REMIND FOLK THAT US FOOTBALL FANS ARE THE LIFEBLOOD THAT KEEPS FOOTBALL ALIVE. NO PLAYER, MANAGER, COACH, OWNER IS TRULY IRREPLACEABLE. Even the tragedy at Leicester, though ghastly, will not kill the club. Munich in 1957 did not kill Man United; quite the opposite, as if gained them massive additional worldwide fan support. So be in no doubt whatever that we ordinary, passionate fans are by far the most important peopple in football. Most players are not real fans, so they are also not “traitors” when they leave. Though as we all know there are proper and awful ways to leave. Henry is still adored but RvP is considered a traitor by many. Double standards ? You bet your life, as we are all humans and therefore cannot avoid a degree of hypocrisy- that being a natural part of the human condition. Would you consider yourself a traitor if you changed your bank, your supermarket, your gas company, phone etc etc? Of course not! And no true fan CAN change his/her team. That is what makes us lot priceless!

    1. jon fox says:

      Munich was of course Feb 1958. I was still seven but knew what had happened and its significance.

      1. jon fox says:

        Jimmy Carter played for us at Anfield in 1967, if I remember correctly, not the seventies at all. He came from Millwall.

        1. snowden says:

          I know that Liverpool feel well. I could get into the cop end at any Liverpool game. For our a local got me a ticket in the main stand as near as the ‘Kop End’ as possible.

          When we scored I “stood up to salute the goal” which right in front of me.
          Before I could open my mouth I heard from behind me:

          ‘Sidown you fool its them’. Phew!

          1. snowden says:

            Sorry typo that should b: e I couldn’t get into the kop end
            A local got me a ticket for the stand.
            Sorry for those typos.

        2. A.ball08 says:

          Evening chaps

          We are getting to old to soon. Memories going so had to check….good old google
          Sorry but jimmy carter came from Liverpool to us in 91.
          Played until 95

      2. Phil says:

        And just to add to that muddled up brain Jon -Jimmy Carter was bought by George Graham from Liverpool in the early nineties I think but definitely not the 1970’s but total Kudos for standing on the Kop mate.I once stood on the Shelf at WHL when we were a goal down after 60 seconds and 2-1 up after 5 minutes.(Game ended 2-1 to us).That was a very uncomfortable Sunday afternoon I can tell you

        1. A.ball08 says:


          If we are drudging up bad and uncomfortable days
          Was in the shelf in shitty heart lane in 83 when the spuds done us 5-0
          Those were the days…..hehehehe

          1. Phil says:

            A.ball08-I was given seats 10 minutes before the game by Steve Perryman (who was injured) as I knew Brian Talbot And he arranged them.This was the first time I took my wife to WHL and sat in what was then their new stand,top tier,right in the middle of what seemed like 100,000 of the enemy.Goal down after 90 seconds.4-0 down at half-time.Lost 5-0.After their second went in it was obvious that I was the only one not celebrating so had what seemed like ALL 100,000 of them onto me.I refused to leave before the end in spite of the result.It was Easter Monday and one of my worst ever experiences watching Arsenal.The only good thing about it was that they were complementary seats so it didn’t cost me a penny.Other than my self respect of course.A very black day in my football supporting life.And of course I totally blamed the wife for the result

          2. A.ball08 says:

            Omg Phil
            Taking your wife to the game and in the wrong end…how painful
            Listen my memories no so good these days…
            So help me out here if you can
            Did Davis play for us that day and the spuds give him stick..not sure
            All I remember was trying to back to Holloway through the estate around there. Cars alight ect and thinking this is crap place to live.

  8. ozziegunner says:

    I will support Carl Jenkinson while ever he is an Arsenal player, because he wants to remain and fight for a place. Where and when he plays is a matter for Unai Emery.

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