As there is little news coming out of the Bank at the minute, I was toying with the idea of doing another speculation piece, maybe looking at young players from the Premier League we might sign.
Luckily, long time SW reader and Imps fan Shaun Dixon has done it for me! He sent me a great email last night about the Arsenal youth setup, and so I’ve had a little play with the text to produce the sort of speculation article some of you love (and some of you don’t). Us signing a player from Arsenal isn’t beyond the realms of possibility, after all, we did have Tyreece John-Jules here under Michael. Therefore, I’ll hand you over to Shaun for his analysis of the players Arsenal might want to loan out this coming season.
To start, there’s no suggestion any are moving to Lincoln, but some of them might end up going to other EFL clubs, writes Shaun. However, one of my friends is an Arsenal season ticket holder and also closely follows their academy sides to keep an eye on any possible emerging talent. He says they’ve got a list of a number of highly-rated youngsters that they feel have made enough progress in the academy set-up and they are now extremely keen to get some of these players out on loan this season. That will mainly be to get them some experience of men’s football in the hope of toughening them up and getting some of them ready for possible integration in the first team squad in the future.
This is purely me speculating on some of the names my friend has given me. They are probably more likely to either be placed with clubs closer to London where Arsenal can keep an eye on them, or be placed with a Championship club like Elliott Smith-Rowe and Huddersfield last year. Bear in mind, he is now part of the Arsenal first-team squad and made a number of first-team appearances towards the end of last season.
That said, I never expected Premier League Champions Man City to loan us a £4 million rated youngster like Morgan Rogers or Nottm Forest to loan us Brennan Johnson (now £10 million rated if you believe the stories). So, if Arsenal do feel the Championship is a step too soon for some of the youngsters where they might get lost among the rough and tumble and not get many first-team starts, they might want a League One club where they get more game time. Also, bear in mind how well we looked after Tyreece John-Jules when he came on loan here and apparently how extremely impressed Arsenal were with Jez George’s presentation to Arsenal, maybe Lincoln City could be an attractive proposition for a club like Arsenal to loan some of its talented youngsters to. When you throw in Michael Appleton’s growing reputation for nurturing and improving young talent, Arsenal may be more inclined to trust us with their talented young academy players over other clubs at our level.