Arsenal have unearthed their very own Aguero


Arsenal's 2-0 win over Southampton was hardly a landmark moment.

Yet, for one player, it could have signalled the beginning of something special.

Eddie Nketiah scored just his second Premier League goal for the Gunners as Mikel Arteta's brave selection page dividends.

Against Brighton last weekend, he preferred Alexandre Lacazette, a man who had very little impact.

Thus, it was no surprise to see Nketiah in the fray on Thursday.

The 21-year-old has been a revelation in the second half of the campaign, going from someone who looked like their chances of making it at Arsenal were slim, to someone now right at the heart and centre of Arteta's rebuild.

Nketiah was brave. He was willing. He was hard working and most important of all, he found the back of the net. His tenacity to never give up shone through as he charged Alex McCarthy down and then fired into an empty net.


It was that work-rate that a certain Marcelo Bielsa could do with at Leeds. Funnily enough, the Argentine ignored him on a regular basis while the youngster was on loan at Elland Road.

Considering his impact in north London since returning - scoring four goals - it almost defies belief that he didn't get a proper chance.

The forward started just two Championship matches compared to the five Premier League starts he's earned since the turn of the year. 

Quietly, he has become one of Arteta's most important players.


GIVEMESPORT'S Matt Dawson says...

It's quite the statement to make, but Arteta may have found his very own Aguero at Arsenal.

The Gunners head coach worked closely with the Manchester City striker during his tenure at the Etihad and we've all been waiting on tenterhooks to see what Arteta had learned from Pep Guardiola.

Coincidentally, it's the use of his strikers that currently resembles the former Barcelona manager's style the most.

Speaking at half-time on Sky Sports' coverage of Southampton vs Arsenal, Jamie Redknapp drew comparisons between the way they operated:

"Aubameyang as a central striker will get you more goals, make no mistake about it. But I think it’s his work-rate that he likes," he said.

"It reminds me a bit of Pep Guardiola, when he first came, he used to prefer Jesus because he’d work from the front, chasing lost causes. It took a little while for (Sergio) Aguero to buy into it and I don’t know if Aubameyang will be that striker still, especially if he’s not going to be at the club and wants to go. He thinks Nketiah works hard for the team." 

Aguero's work-rate hasn't always been the best but he eventually bought into it at City and was very much key for Guardiola and Arteta.

From a work-rate point of view, Nketiah is very similar, and if he can find a similar number of goals, he could become devastating. With the way he's going at the moment, the 21-year-old is certainly on the right track.

After all, he's leading the line over a striker of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's quality.

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