September 18, 2022

Why I gave 15-year-old Nwaneri EPL debut – Arteta

Why I gave 15-year-old Nwaneri EPL debut – Arteta

Efosa Taiwo

Arsenal boss, Mikel Arteta has disclosed the reason he handed an English Premier League debut to 15-year-old Ethan Nwaneri in their game against Brentford.

Nwaneri became the youngest ever player in the EPL at the age of 15 and 181 days when he came on to replace Bukayo Saka in the 90th minute of the game.

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The previous-youngest had been Harvey Elliott, who played for Fulham at the age of 16 years and 30 days (v Wolves in May 2019

According to Arteta, sheer “gut feeling” made him introduce Nwaneri into the game.

“It was a pure gut feeling. I met the boy, I really liked what I saw. He trained with us a couple of times.

“I had that feeling yesterday that if the opportunity could come, I would do it. He deserves it,” Arteta told reporters.

Nwaneri has made rapid progress with the club in recent months.

He started the season with the u18s and impressed throughout pre-season, starring in some friendlies. One of which was against Slough Town, with Rebels boss picking him out as a potential star of the future.