Alex Iwobi’s journey to Arsenal’s first-team squad for last season should offer hope to the next generation of Gunners aiming to force their way into Arsene Wenger’s plans for next season.
The 20-year-old, who will wear the no.17 shirt, previously worn by Alexis Sanchez, joined the north London club when at primary school and finally made his debut in a 3-0 defeat to Sheffield Wednesday in the Capital One Cup last year.
However, despite that disappointing bow, he has since gone from strength to strength and has cemented himself into Wenger's first team squad, displacing the likes of Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
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The Nigerian is expected to feature heavily for Arsenal once again next season, but he could also be joined by other starlets from the Emirates Stadium.
Here are three players that could earn promotion to the first-team next season.
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Nothing would be sweeter for Arsenal plans than seeing a player let go by fierce rivals Chelsea many years ago bring the glory days back to North London, and Edward Nketiah could do just that.
With Olivier Giroud, Theo Walcott and Danny Welbeck all battling for consistency, Wenger could gamble by giving the 16-year-old some game time next season.
Nketiah was in prolific form for the Londoners across various age groups last term, and finished with 24 goals from just 20 appearances.
How the Gunners need a striker capable of hitting such lofty heights for the first-team.
Arsenal have possessed many French stars over the years. Thierry Henry, Patrick Viera and Robert Pires were particularly magnificent when the club last won the Premier League title back in 2004, and 18-year-old Jeff Reine-Adelaide could be next.
The midfielder made his first appearance for the club in Arsenal’s straightforward 3-1 victory over Sunderland in the FA Cup back in January, replacing scorer Joel Campbell with nine minutes left on the clock.
Of all the players currently in the academy Reine-Adelaide is extremely highly thought of, and could see more action after the departures of Mikel Arteta, Tomas Rosicky and Mathieu Flamini this summer.
When asked if he would consider giving Willock some first-team action back in March, Wenger was enthusiastic about the idea, and it seems only a matter of time until the 18-year-old makes his debut.
The youngster, who last year spoke of his rather ambitious aspirations to secure a date with singer Rihanna, is one of the finest players in the Gunners academy at the current time.
Willock has already received his first taste of silverware after lifting the Under-21 Division Two title alongside Santi Cazorla, and will be aiming to emulate the Spaniard by helping to bring trophies to the Emirates Stadium.
Will Alex Iwobi be joined in the first-team next season by more youths? Or will Arsene Wenger be splashing the cash this summer? Have YOUR say in the comment section below!
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