The Under-23s Thread

AbouCuéllar

Wishes to get banned elsewhere
Match hghlights from yesterday:

Was #11 there Bradley Ibrahim?

Edit: realise it was probably Salah-Eddine. Made a nice little filtered ball there to the right in the highlights.

I'd like to see more of Bandeira, he was a player that really intrigued me, but it doesn't seem like he is stamping too much authority on matches. Though caveat of coming back from injury of course.
 
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lamby22

It's Not Lupus
Harry Clarke off to Dingwall. From the bright lights of London to the arse end of nowhere, population a little over 5000.

 

teamsoutheast

Well-Known Member
This is an interesting move from the club. He has a wealth of international youth football experience. Ryan Garry was unlucky not to get offered the job but he can only benefit from Betsy's experience. Best of luck to the both of them...
 

Macho

Has Trust Issues With Processes
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Arsenal have confirmed the appointment of Kevin Betsy as their new Under-23s head coach.

The appointment comes following the dismissal of club legend Steve Bould, who had spent over 30 years at the club as both a player and coach.

“It’s an honour and privilege to be joining Arsenal as Under-23s Head Coach. Arsenal is of course an iconic club in world football with such a rich history,” Betsy told Arsenal’s official website.

“This is also a club with a very strong current record of developing young football players for the highest level, but also placing an emphasis on producing well-rounded young people.”

“Throughout my recruitment process, I’ve had some extremely positive discussions with Per Mertesacker, Luke Hobbs and senior management at Arsenal, which has made my decision to come to the club even easier.

Betsy arrives from the FA, having worked with England Under-15s, Under-16s, Under-17s and was most recently Under-18s head coach.

What will his priorities be as Under-23s head coach?​

While results will need to improve, as Arsenal Under-23s finished 10th in the Premier League 2 last season, Betsy’s main objective will be to continue developing players to make steps towards first-team football.

Before working with the FA, he was the lead youth development phase at Fulham, and having helped nurture players who have gone on to star for Gareth Southgate’s England, he carries vast expertise in this area.

Of the current crop of Under-23s players, Miguel Azeez, Charlie Patino, Kido Taylor-Hart and new arrival Mika Biereth will be some of the players whose development will be more keenly watched.

Is there a clear pathway for Under-23s players?​

In recent seasons, Arsenal have slightly changed their approach to the promotion of Under-23s players.

Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe are the shining examples of players being good enough to slot straight into the first team. Azeez has been given tastes of that environment, most recently in his pre-season cameo against Watford, but there has also been an effort to utilise the loan market.

Tyreece John-Jules, Daniel Ballard and Matt Smith are such players who will continue to get first team experience elsewhere. However, with those currently in the Under-23s squad a couple of years younger, this will give Betsy a chance to mould them in his image.
 

Tosker

Does Not Hate Foreigners
Another progressive move from Mertesacker. Betsy's worked with a number of our young players in the England international set-up over the years and seems to be extremely highly rated. Look forward to seeing what this does for our U23 set-up going forward.
I wish he looked less like Craig Charles - but pleased to see a bit of diversity in our coaching staff
 

drippin

Well-Known Member
Very nice to see something fresh after Bould stagnated. Garry is the assistant for him, which makes sense if he only just got his Pro Licence.

"Under-18s coach Kevin Betsy has been appointed as the new U23s boss at Arsenal.

The 43-year-old succeeds Gunners legend Steve Bould, who was sacked in May after two decades as a coach with the club.

Betsy is a Uefa Pro Licence coach who has developed a stellar reputation during his five years with the Football Association.

He joined in 2016 as England U15s lead and has gone on to coach the 16s, 17s and 18s. His win ratio in 52 games is 70%, achieved with an average of 64% possession, and his teams won four tournaments (the Uefa Development Tournament, Val De Marne and St George's Park International Tournament with the 16s in 2018/19 and the Syrenka Cup with the 17s in 2019/20).

During his time with England he has worked with players including Jude Bellingham, Jadon Sancho, Phil Foden and Buyako Saka. Prior to joining the FA the former pro player was Lead Youth Development Phase at Fulham for seven years.

Ryan Garry, who recently gained the Pro Licence, will continue as Arsenal’s U23s assistant, with Dan Micciche taking the U18s, as TGG revealed earlier in the summer.
Betsy's departure means England are now without coaches at U15s, 16s, 17s, 18s and 20s."

 

Sebastes

Statbomb Merchant
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Another progressive move from Mertesacker. Betsy's worked with a number of our young players in the England international set-up over the years and seems to be extremely highly rated. Look forward to seeing what this does for our U23 set-up going forward.
Yep, big man Per setting himself up for a DoF job in the future. Good to see someone make thoughful, sensible moves from the start.
 

MutableEarth

Reiss' Dad
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Yep, big man Per setting himself up for a DoF job in the future. Good to see someone make thoughful, sensible moves from the start.
It's a shame we dont have 2 Mertesackers because I really would like a continuation of what he is doing with the academy. Between Hale End and the recruitment in place, the academy is seemingly stronger than ever in terms of talent. The issue of course is everything going on in the first team and the preference to older, less talented players taking up spaces that could be filled by academy talent.
 

MutableEarth

Reiss' Dad
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More good news - Mazeed Ogungbo signs a pro deal. Another in an interesting batch of promising defenders currently at the club. He's a big, strong and athletic defender (around 6'2) and plays as a CB or LB. I personally quite like him at LB, he's difficult to deal with when coming forward and has good movement, but long term I definitely see him ending up CB. Will be interesting to see what happens with him. Personally, I'd like for him to be first choice LB for the U23s next season - I think he has good potential there and it's a potential pathway for him considering there are so few natural LBs as it is. Obviously Tavares signing makes any progress difficult but as much as I like Tavares from what I've seen, I view him as a potential flip - as in, he puts in some good performances as a back-up and nets us a profit in 2 years time or so.
 

RunTheTrap

Nobody laughs on my "jokes" 😫
Not sure where to put this but I’m not sure this is the best thing for him. Kid needs to play against men. He’ll be 19 next month. It’s young but it’s not exactly baby years for a footballer. A good year out in the Championship will do him some good. A good loan spell can save careers look at ESR and Willock for instance.
If this was under a more progressive regime I’d be cool with this but I see Arteta as somewhat as a hoarder. He hoarded Nketiah, Nelson and ruined their season.
 

GoonerJeeves

Up The Terriers
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He didn't "hoard" Nelson, the lad didn't want to go on loan.

It's a pity we do not have a relationship with a club for loans. I doubt Azeez will get enough games, especially with us having no European fixtures this season. At the same time you do not want him being Pulised either.

I agree that the Championship can be an excellent proving ground, it has to be the right club though.
 

MutableEarth

Reiss' Dad
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Not sure where to put this but I’m not sure this is the best thing for him. Kid needs to play against men. He’ll be 19 next month. It’s young but it’s not exactly baby years for a footballer. A good year out in the Championship will do him some good. A good loan spell can save careers look at ESR and Willock for instance.
If this was under a more progressive regime I’d be cool with this but I see Arteta as somewhat as a hoarder. He hoarded Nketiah, Nelson and ruined their season.
Yeah I didn't like this either. Especially with Lokonga coming in and Xhaka signing a deal, his minutes are probably gonna be taken up - particularly by Elneny who'll be filling in wherever possible. Azeez should ideally go on loan and ASAP. I think while he can gain a lot under the new coach in the current U23 set-up, the experience he will gain will be scant compared to the experience he could be getting.
 

Maybe

Well-Known Member
Yeah I didn't like this either. Especially with Lokonga coming in and Xhaka signing a deal, his minutes are probably gonna be taken up - particularly by Elneny who'll be filling in wherever possible. Azeez should ideally go on loan and ASAP. I think while he can gain a lot under the new coach in the current U23 set-up, the experience he will gain will be scant compared to the experience he could be getting.
It's actually not that bad if he stays for the next couple of months and leaves on loan in Jan. He's looking hot in the preseason and if that continues through u23 and a few League cup games, his stock may be high in January which could lead to some better loan options. Would be devastating though to see Elneny getting League cup minutes instead
 

Tomb Bombadil

Active Member
It's actually not that bad if he stays for the next couple of months and leaves on loan in Jan. He's looking hot in the preseason and if that continues through u23 and a few League cup games, his stock may be high in January which could lead to some better loan options. Would be devastating though to see Elneny getting League cup minutes instead
I agree they can still loan him out in Jan. A full season in the Championsship is also tought. He still wil train a lot with the first team.

Maybe the wanted to loan him out but with question marks over Willock, AMN and now Partey injured they want to keep him. Could get him some game time.
 

MutableEarth

Reiss' Dad
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The last of the 2nd year scholars who hadn't signed yet. So that's the U23 team pretty much set - I don't expect any other arrivals, as it's pretty stacked at the moment. Some obviously need loans but there's enough behind them.

Butler-Oyedeji has kinda gone under the radar (well, he's been under the radar before anyway) but he's a very solid technician and dribbler so he'll still be one to watch in terms of development.
 

AbouCuéllar

Wishes to get banned elsewhere
Not sure where to put this but I’m not sure this is the best thing for him. Kid needs to play against men. He’ll be 19 next month. It’s young but it’s not exactly baby years for a footballer. A good year out in the Championship will do him some good. A good loan spell can save careers look at ESR and Willock for instance.
If this was under a more progressive regime I’d be cool with this but I see Arteta as somewhat as a hoarder. He hoarded Nketiah, Nelson and ruined their season.
If this is true, and Azeez doesn't get minutes in the league cup over Elneny, I will be pissed.

Azeez-Lokonga should be the pivot in those games. In reality if we are going to sign a CM while keeping Xhaka Elneny should leave, which would leave us with Xhaka, Thomas, New Signing, Lokonga, and Azeez at CM, and with Azeez as 5th CM there's really no time for him except for league cup and he should be sent on loan in January.
 

teamsoutheast

Well-Known Member
Just heading back from the game tonight. Boreham Wood ended up 4-0 winners and it was well deserved. They were by far physically superior but the boys held their own out there for large periods of the game. Standout performers tonight for me were once again Azeez, he just gets better everytime I see him. He's ready to play men's football IMO. He will definitely shine at this level and will have to move up to first team later in the year as I feel it will be too easy for him eventually. Omari Hutchinson again looked good on the ball. Needs more final 3rd quality though and still seems raw but he's very skillful. Ben Cottrell looked the most technical player on the pitch alongside Azeez. Very skillful and used his size to his advantage to wriggle out of challenges. He never gave up battling for the ball and surprisingly won some battles which he shouldn't have physically. Kirk is growing on me. He looks very composed on the ball and seems very strong. Likewise his CB partner Rekik was also very good, it will be interesting to see how Rekik does over the course of the season. I think Kirk will be really good by the time he's 20-21. KTH didn't demand the ball enough for me. He did well against their full back on occasions but didn't influence the game enough. Omari was more influential on the other flank. Salah was really good when he came on. Really technical talent he is. Kept the ball really well especially for his size and the size of the players he was up against. Although it was a pretty heavy loss, the goals were from individual mistakes I expect when playing against more physical men's teams. They will learn from this. 1 more thing, I didn't see Ryan Garry in the dugout. I think Michiche managed this game, I could be wrong though. Kevin Betsy I suspect will manage the team in their next game.
 

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