Is Arsenal’s Academy As Good As Some Think?

In the past years Arsenal’s manager Arsene Wenger keeps telling himself and the club’s fans that the future is big for the Gunners and that the academy will soon become the engine of the team. This setup is supposed to provide so many talents that the team won’t be able to carry them all, but after 15 years of having Wenger at the club, we see ourselves not much farther ahead right now.

The Academy striker Sanchez Watt has just signed a loan move with Crawley until the end of the season and is due to join the club soon.

“Sanchez Watt is a player we have monitored and admired for some time now and we are absolutely thrilled that a player of his quality is coming to Crawley.

“He had several offers to go to Championship and League One clubs but he likes the idea of playing for a club who are challenging for promotion.

“I think he can make a really big difference to what is already a very talented squad. I cannot remember being as excited about a signing for some time.”

Now, the question is, isn’t Watt supposed, like a lot more others, to be highly admired at the age of 20 years old by much bigger clubs? We all know how good Walcott was at 20 and look at Chamberlain at 19, and they didn’t have the expenses and class of the Arsenal academy at their fingertips now did they? Shouldn’t we be worrying that perhaps Wenger’s scouting team isn’t quite as amazing as first thought?

4 thoughts on “Is Arsenal’s Academy As Good As Some Think?

  1. its funny how you choose to mention players like sanchez and ignore some one like wilshere who has been at the club since the age of 9. I bet if u used him as an example your intended negativity wouldnt have yielded anythng.

  2. yea exactly! A club like Arsenal that take youth development and Academy seriously develop one Jack Wilshere in how many years?

  3. Funny that you chose to neglect Jack Wilshere, Emmanuel Frimpong, Francis Coquelin and Kieran Gibbs in your argument – not to mention the graduates who have gone on to make excellent careers for themselves (Sidwell, Bothroyd, Harper, Connolly, Traore, Senderos and a whole string of others). – instead you focus on a player who was never really hailed as a top prospect as a youngster and only earned a new contract this year because of his excellent goalscoring form for the reserves.

    When considering our academy’s performance, remember that our emphasis on it youth still a fairly new concept and that the likes of West Ham, Southampton, Barcelona, Ajax and all the other great academy sides have had many, many years on us. I believe that the likes of Chuks Aneke and Benik Afobe represent what will hopefully be a Barca-esque bumper crop for the Arsenal in the future.

    Also worth considering is that an academy has a second role – to generate income for a football club. Bigwigs at clubs like Sporting Lisbon, Boca Juniors and Ajax will tell you that they NEED to sell on their graduates in order to remain viable. To this day, even a club like Barca will only see a handful of academy graduates make the first team while the rest move on to seek their fortunes.

  4. Look at our carling cup runs in recent years, most of which include players from the academy, I’m also pretty sure if our academy side had to play our first 11, it would not be a walk over for our starting line up, we have produced players like cashley cole, nacer baritize, jay simpsons, frimpong, sidwel, armand troare, kyle bartley, these players can walk into other prem teams, the point is the academy is producing many many players, some are on loan receiving work permits so dey wear the red and white of arsenal

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