Category Archives: Football

Who is Eddie Nketiah???

Edward Keddar Nketiah is an English professional footballer that currently plays as a forward for Arsenal London. At only 18 years-old, he managed to score in what was his first kick ever in Arsenal’s jersey and helped the gunners win their cup contest against Norwich.

He made his debut with Arsenal in the Europa league against Bate Borisov, replacing Joe Willock in the 72nd minute in what was a great 4-2 victory for the gunners.  If you’re interested in learning more about this 18-years-old striker that may just be the future for Arsenal’s attack, keep reading this article.

Started Football at Chelsea

Eddie first got into the world of professional football at Chelsea, the life-long London rivals of Arsenal. He progressed through Chelsea’s ranks step by step and everything seemed to work out just fine for the youngster, however, in 2015 he was told that he won’t continue his career there. This was the cue for Arsenal that immediately invited Eddie for a trial and only a week later he was signed by them on scholarship forms.

Climbing the Ladder

Now playing for the team he was a fan of ever since he was a little kid, Nketiah started to climb the ladder and after a short period, he earned his spot in the U18 Arsenal team. His talent was quickly catching the eye of Arsenal bosses and the fact that he started to score in almost every game also helped his ascension towards the first team. His stats were remarkable for the U18 team, Eddie scoring 24 goals in the 28 matches he played for the Gunners.

His impressive form during the U18 season made him the perfect candidate for the jump to the U23 for the 2016-217 campaign. Again, he kept his form and scored more than 20 goals, a performance that won him a spot in the team that went to play for the pre-season tour in Australia and China. There Eddie made his appearance in matches against Sydney FC, Bayern Munchen or even his former team, Chelsea.

It was only natural that, after such a good run in his first years with Arsenal, Eddie was rewarded with his first professional contract that he signed in September 2016. As if it wasn’t already very clear, this is the moment when he officially committed to Arsenal on long-term. Totally aware of the importance of signing this contract, Nketiah declared that he signed it by working hard and always trying to improve. He also said that he’ll keep doing the same thing since the goal is to become a regular in the first team and really make an impact on Arsenal’s play.

What Does the Future Hold?

Since he is already training with the first team on a regular basis, the questions about his future at the club are just a natural follow-up. Having already scored two goals for Arsenal’s main team after coming from the bench, Eddie seems like the perfect solution for Wenger in times of need. But even so, the club must surely have a well-devised plan for his future since you can’t just let a diamond like that fade away.

The usual approach in situations like this one is to keep playing him in the first team as a substitute and, when the time comes, going for a loan so that he can gather more minutes in the first eleven of another Premier League team. This seems like the best move for Arsenal in the development of what could be their next big star, Eddie Nketiah.

Support from Thierry Henry

Even former Arsenal legend, Thierry Henry is totally ready to make a bet regarding the strength and future of Eddie Nketiah. The Frenchman that worked with Eddie at the U18 team had enough time to observe the development and sheer talent of the youngster and stated that he is certain Nketiah will be able to score goals even when he will turn 60. Henry continued the praises towards the youngster and said that Eddie is a great kid with awesome skills. He was always on time, hard-working and always eager to learn and improve.

When you get so much praise from a player like Henry, you really must be doing something right. And if you thought that’s already a lot of recognition, you might want to wait and hear what else the Frenchman had to say about Eddie. In an interview he said that even though Nketiah isn’t a fancy player, he is very efficient and lethal in front of goal and it just seems that every time he gets on the field, he will definitely score.

So, it seems that the world of football just got another rising star in the person of Eddie Nketiah and only time will tell what his mark on international football will be. Either if Arsenal decides to give him a shot in the first team or decides to continue with a loan to another Premier League team where the youngster can gain some more experience, one thing is certain: we are witnessing the birth of what can be the biggest star of English football. It’s only up to him to stay focused and avoid being pulled-aside by all the media attention he is now receiving.

This brilliant article was written by Alex Norwood, a huge football faN

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Latest Transfer Gossip: Mesut Ozil to Manchester United?

Image result for ozil manchester united

This has been quite an interesting campaign for Mesut Ozil. Like Alexis Sanchez, he has refused to sign a new contract with the club, even though the manager, Arsene Wenger, remains hopeful that he would remain at the club. The German maestro has really struggled with fitness and form this season, and was on the end of some vitriol and abuse last weekend following his glaring miss against Watford, which sadly led to an equalizer on the other end of the field.

When Ozil signed a five-year deal in 2013, many were hopeful that he would remain in the club for years to come as Arsene Wenger did his bit to build the team around him. Prior to his arrival, the Spanish diminutive magician, Santi Cazorla, played the #10 position in the 2012/13 season, scoring 12 goals and providing 12 assists to his teammates, including that four-assist masterclass against Wigan Athletic. With Mikel Arteta taking the holding role following Alex Song’s departure and the emergence of Aaron Ramsey in the box-to-box role, Cazorla was shoved to the wings to accommodate Ozil and his football somewhat waned. It was when Arteta left and he moved to central midfield alongside Francis Coquelin that we saw the best of Cazorla, but Ozil remained in his #10 position.

Arsene Wenger’s switch to 3-4-2-1 has seen Ozil play behind the main striker with Alexis Sanchez but he drifts to the right wing and hasn’t been at his best. He has actually been in and out of the team and for some reason, the manager hasn’t been playing him, claiming he’s ‘injured’, but I was surprised to see Ozil playing some qualifiers for Germany when he was meant to be in a treatment table at London Colney.

The latest transfer gossip dominating the back pages is the report from the Mirror stating that Ozil has informed his teammates in training that he’s planning to join Manchester United. You know you don’t have to necessarily believe any thing you see with these media vultures, but what if it’s actually true? I remember when news surfaced that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain told the manager to his face that he wanted to leave. Many thought it was just some rumor and when we saw the Ox in the early season games we thought everything was all well and good. Then he rejected a massive 180,000 quid-per-week contract and the rumors of his departure took center stage and we know how that has panned out.

Wenger would have to handle this situation with wisdom and it can cause friction in the team. If Ozil’s mind is made up and he really wants to leave, it will certainly affect his performances on the pitch. We have Jack Wilshere itching to make up for lost time and maybe it’s time to give him the football he wants, provided he remains fit. Alex Iwobi is another player on the fringes that’s trying to stake a claim for a permanent shirt and with Ozil’s situation hovering around, he can do his own bit to impress his manager.

Sayonara.

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Time for Some Red Star Freshness in Belgrade

Image result for giroud goal europa

The thing I love about football is that you’re only as good as your next game. When the Gunners went on that seven game winning streak that panned across three different competitions, everything seemed right in the world of Arsenal and we were hoping to capitalize on the failings of Liverpool and Chelsea to stake a claim for a top four berth, but we all know how that worked out in Vicarage Road last Saturday.

Watford beat the Gunners, fingers were pointed at the penalty and what have you, and the Arsenal universe went into doom and gloom mode. “Mesut Ozil is lazy!” (wow! like we didn’t know before), “Granit Xhaka picked his nose and didn’t close down Tom Cleverley”. “Alexandre Lacazette doesn’t play the entire 90 minutes”. Loads and loads of analysis, with expert fans giving their Football Manager opinions, like they know better than a man that has been in real football management since the 1980’s. Not like I’m discrediting those fans that feel they can manage the club better than Wenger, just support your club in the good times and of course, bad times, because they will always be there.

After witnessing the Champions League fixtures on Tuesday and Wednesday, I am having some excitement on tonight’s game against Red Star Belgrade. Face it, my club has struggled for quite some time in the Champions League, finishing in second place only to face a Barcelona or Bayern Munich and face elimination in the Round of 16. Even when we managed to win our group last season, Bayern still managed to finish in second place, just to add more humiliation to us. 15-3 in the last three games against the Bavarians hurts a lot.

So here we are, in the Europa League, playing against farmers and randomites from countries I only see on atlases or hear in the news for one thing or the other. Did I tell you that my spelling and pronunciation has been improved since we started playing in the Europa League? C’mon we are going to the Crvena Zvezda Stadium in Belgrade. Can you pronounce the ‘Z’ bit without twisting your tongue? That’s the freshness I’m talking about. A new adventure I’ve not experienced as an Arsenal fan. Yes, I was a fan when we lost to Galatasaray in the 2000 UEFA Cup final, but since Arsene Wenger took over some umpteen years ago, we have never played in Europe’s second tier competition till this season.

This tournament also offers us the chance to see some youngsters and fringe players that are desperate to impress and stake a claim for a first team berth. By default, David Ospina is our Cup keeper, so his position is usually uncontested bar injuries or terrible loss of form. Forgotten man, Matt Debuchy will be in contention to play tonight, as Hector Bellerin could do with a breather. I’m pretty sure his psyche is all fucked up, missing a goalscoring chance on one end and conceding the penalty that led to Watford’s equalizer on the other end. The impressive Rob Holding will have another chance to err, impress. There’s a rusty captain, Per Mertesacker, that’s in need of game time and the list continues.

With Debuchy’s presence in right back, maybe Reiss Nelson can deputize as a right winger but with Wenger probably willing to give some game time to Theo Walcott (yeah, he still exists), Debuchy might be drafted to center back, to accommodate Walcott and Nelson on that right flank. Francis Coquelin is back from his long term injury layoff and will probably feature in central midfield alongside Mohamed Elneny. We could see Ainsley Maitland-Niles play in that unfamiliar left wing back role. Jack Wilshere is also itching for a chance to impress as well. Then there’s the Handsome Bearded Frenchie, Olivier Giroud, that would certainly be favored ahead of his fellow Frenchman, Lacazette, in these sort of games.

 

I don’t know much of our hosts, but they are sitting pretty at the top of the Serbian Super Liga, with 31 points from 12 games. They enjoyed an emphatic 4-0 victory against Macva Sabac over the weekend, so they come into the game in good form. The Gunners need to be mindful of their dangerous forward, Alesandr Pesic, who bagged his sixth goal of the season in the weekend fixture.

Team Form

Red Star Belgrade Form

  • Last Five Games: W W L W W
  • Last Result: Red Star Belgrade 4-0 Macva Sabac
  • Leading Goalscorer: Alesandr Pesic (6)

Arsenal Form

  • Last Five Games: W W W W L
  • Last Result: Watford 2-1 Arsenal
  • Leading Goalscorer: Alexandre Lacazette (4)

 

Predicted lineup

FC Red Star Belgrade 4-2-3-1 football formation

The potential starting XI would look like this

Arsenal 3-4-3 football formation

Bar Mertesacker, this squad is devoid of those players that had a rough night in Watford. It also offers Wenger the opportunity to access some playing positions in the team, ahead of the all-important clash against fellow strugglers, Everton, this weekend.

Till then, let’s enjoy some red star freshness in Belgrade.

Sayonara.

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