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‘There’s a chance’: Mikel Arteta could give 21-year-old Arsenal youngster big promotion next season

‘There’s a chance’: Mikel Arteta could give 21-year-old Arsenal youngster big promotion next season

Mikel Arteta, the manager of Arsenal, seems likely to promote goalkeeper Arthur Okonkwo to the first-team in the upcoming season, as suggested by James McNicholas, a journalist from The Athletic, during an episode of the Arsecast Podcast.

With the current season concluded, Arsenal can now focus on planning the composition of their squad for the next season. It appears that players such as Granit Xhaka are already expected to depart from the club. Additionally, several players who were on loan at other clubs will be returning to Arsenal.

Among those who spent time away from The Emirates, few had a more successful spell than the young goalkeeper Arthur Okonkwo.


Last summer, the 21-year-old goalkeeper, Arthur Okonkwo, joined Crewe Alexandra and showcased impressive performances, establishing himself as one of their top players in the first half of the season.

In January, Arsenal decided to recall Okonkwo from his loan spell and subsequently sent him to Sturm Graz, a team in the Austrian top-flight league.

Okonkwo’s notable performances in Austria captured the attention of Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta. As a result, it appears that Okonkwo is now on track to permanently join the first-team squad for the upcoming season.

Arteta set to give Okonkwo first-team chance at Arsenal

Speaking about the goalkeeper situation on the Arsecast Podcast, McNicholas said: “There’s a couple of keepers, Alex Runarsson and Arthur Okonkwo.

“I think there’s a chance that Okonkwo might be third-choice next season.

“I believe Karl Hein is going to go out on loan, but I had been led to believe that they might look to bring in somebody more experienced to be the third choice.

“That’s what a lot of these big clubs do these days, Scott Carson’s about to win the treble!

“I think Arsenal made enquiries over a couple of keepers of a similar profile, experienced veterans who would just be an emergency stopgap.”

Arteta would have taken notice of Okonkwo’s return to Arsenal with a cup winner’s medal, further highlighting his impressive achievements during his loan spell.

This accomplishment would have likely captured Arteta’s attention and potentially played a role in Okonkwo’s potential promotion to the first-team squad.

During his time at Sturm Graz, Okonkwo managed to keep four clean sheets in the league over 15 appearances. His contributions played a part in Sturm Graz securing a second-place finish behind RB Salzburg. As a result, the team will have the opportunity to participate in the qualifying rounds for the Champions League, guaranteeing them some form of European football in the upcoming season.

Considering this, Okonkwo might have a desire to remain in Austria to experience European competition. Nevertheless, it is encouraging that Arteta wants Okonkwo to train alongside the rest of the first-team squad at Arsenal.

However, if Arsenal decides to bring in a more experienced third-choice goalkeeper, it is likely that Okonkwo will be available for another loan spell. This could provide him with valuable playing time and further development opportunities.

‘There’s a chance’: Mikel Arteta could give 21-year-old Arsenal youngster big promotion next season

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