‘The real test’: Arsenal youngsters must focus on one thing to be England squad, says pundit

Lane DiasJanuary 25, 2021

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Glenn Hoddle believes Arsenal teenager Emile Smith Rowe must perform consistently if he is to break into England’s senior squad ahead of the Euros, he wrote in his column Evening Standard.



The 20-year-old midfielder has had a fantastic season and has the backing of Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta.

The Spaniard has used the London-born player ten times in all competitions this season, while Smith Rowe rewarded him with two goals and five assists.

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The youngster has only made six appearances in each of his first two seasons, suggesting he is increasingly important to the Gunners.

Hoddle: ‘Arsenal have a very good group of youngsters’

The England U20 international is in excellent form, appearing in seven of the Gunners’ last eight games. He has started six games, scoring one goal and assisting three times.

Photo by Stewart McFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Hoddle sees Smith Rowe’s forward-thinking approach as a breath of fresh air.

He said: “I saw him play in the Europa League a few years ago and I was very impressed with him. He was very positive, he was very direct and now he gets his chance.

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“It’s great to see these Arsenal youngsters. They have a very good group of youngsters.”

Smithrow at international level

From the U16s to the U20s, Smith Rowe has represented England at all ages.

On the possibility of Smith Rowe breaking into the England first team, Hoddle said: “They have five or six players who can go on to be Arsenal’s top players in the long run. There is no doubt that Smith Rowe could be one of them.

“But it’s one thing when you get into the team when you’re young and do well. The real test for the players is can they maintain the standard you set? These kids have to maintain it – it takes time.”

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First Class (Honours) in Sports Journalism from the University of East London. Sports fan, avid traveller, foodie and movie and TV lover.

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