Football News

Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah confident he is good enough to lead the line for Unai Emery

By Steve Jennings

Published: 18:12, 2 July 2019

Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah has insisted he can lead the line for Arsenal next season but accepts Unai Emery may have other plans for him.

The 20-year-old made nine appearances for Arsenal last season, including three starts, and hopes to play a bigger role in 2019/20.

Nketiah’s chances of more game time: Five key things to know…

  1. Nketiah scored his first league goal for Arsenal against Burnley in one of five Premier League appearances last term.
  2. He played 10 times for the Under-23s side, scoring nine goals in the Premier League 2.
  3. But the youngster struggled to displace top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and fan favourite Alexandre Lacazette in the first-team.
  4. Aubameyang has been linked with an exit but those reports have been played down.
  5. Even if Aubameyang leaves, Arsenal are being linked with Wilfried Zaha, another player who could keep Nketiah out of the side.

Nketiah is set to play a part in Arsenal’s pre-season campaign but has revealed talks with Emery are planned to determine his role for the upcoming campaign.

“I’m going to go back to Arsenal and see where I stand,” Nketiah told Sky Sports.

“I’ve prepared well to go back into pre-season but I need see what plans the manager has for me and we’ll take it from there. At the moment I am returning back to Arsenal and will give it my all.

“[Lacazette and Aubameyang] are good players but there are a lot of good players in every position at Arsenal.

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“You have to believe in yourself and believe that you are good enough to play. I think I am good enough to play for this club.”

Arsenal’s pursuit of Crystal Palace talisman Wilfried Zaha could also end up having an impact on Nketiah.

If Zaha arrives at the Emirates, there will be one fewer attacking slot in the squad and Nketiah may find himself getting even less game time than last season. However, it is believed that Arsenal are someway off Palace’s valuation of the Ivorian, with an £80m having been slapped on the 26-year-old.