Five Arsenal youngsters who could have a big 2023

Looking ahead to 2023, here are five youngsters in the ranks at Arsenal who could help the Gunners next year.

Mikel Arteta’s side have been the cream of the crop domestically so far this season. At the World Cup break, Arsenal actually led the Premier League at Christmas for the first time in years.

The foundation of this success has been a solid starting XI full of young talent – including academy graduates such as Bukayo Saka.

Hale End has produced a haul of players that have starred at the Emirates in the past; now, we will discuss five more youngsters who could break into the Arsenal first team.

Ethan Nwaneri, 15

Holding the record for the youngest-ever Premier League player, Ethan Nwaneri is already a history-maker for the Gunners. He made his topflight debut as a late substitute against Brentford in September. But why was Mikel Arteta prepared to thrust someone so talented into the limelight?

A dynamic attacking midfielder, whilst also happy on either wing, Nwaneri has split time between the U18, U21, and first team.

Nwaneri is a technician: he has a good eye for a pass but is also an excellent dribbler. He can beat players with his great footwork, plus has the athleticism to burst into space around him.

As a result, Nwaneri is never afraid to receive the ball in a tight spot – in line with the Arsenal way of keeping possession, wherever on the pitch.

Despite his tender age, the 15-year-old has already received first-team opportunities from Mikel Arteta. These will only increase as he progresses at Hale End. Who knows? Maybe he will live up to the expectations of those who compare him to a young Cesc Fabregas.

Omari Benjamin, 17

Next up on our list of Arsenal youngsters is a striker who is only in the U18s – but is already receiving plaudits. Omari Benjamin made The Guardian’s “Next Generation 2022” list, a compilation of one talented academy player from each Premier League team. And he definitely justifies his place on that list.

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A clinical forward who can use either foot, Benjamin has seven goals from seven appearances for the U18s in 2022/23. Included in this was a hat-trick against North London rivals, Spurs. Interestingly, these goals showcased the 17-year-old’s ability to cut in off the left-hand side – a preferred attacking method to his game.

Benjamin is also a strong runner with the ball, showing a good turn of pace, too. Although Arsenal do have a wealth of attacking options, he could sneak into first team plans in the near future.

Amario Cozier-Duberry, 17

An exciting player whenever he is on the ball, Amario Cozier-Duberry has played in numerous Arsenal teams this season. However, when he does play, the electric winger is typically productive.

For instance, Cozier-Duberry has five goal contributions from just nine appearances in Premier League 2 in 2022/23.

The England U18s player causes problems for opponents thanks to his pace and agility. Cozier-Duberry can operate off either side, though arguably plays best from the left wing.

He played in this position three times during the Gunners’ mid-season friendlies against Lyon, Juventus, and AC Milan. Clearly, the Arsenal youngster impressed, too; he drew comparisons to Bukayo Saka for his performances.

Having already appeared in Europa League and Premier League matchday squads, Amario Cozier-Duberry could make his full debut soon.

Reuell Walters, 18

Switching to defenders now, right-back Reuell Walters is one of the most promising youngsters on the cusp of the Arsenal first team. In the summer, Walters was the only non-first team player to go on the Gunners’ tour of the US.

Before this, the defender started at centre-back in Arsenal’s 5-3 pre-season win over Nurnberg. He, therefore, already has experience of playing with Mikel Arteta’s squad.

Whilst possessing the tools of a strong on-ball defender, Walters also demonstrates a hunger to get involved in attacks when playing at full-back. Additionally, he shows good composure on the ball – almost a staple of all Arsenal youngsters.

The defensive prospect also has positional versatility, popping up anywhere across the back four or in a back three.

Like some other aforementioned youngsters, Walters featured in Arsenal’s December friendlies, too. Hopefully, he can force his way into Mikel Arteta’s plans on a more regular basis in 2023.

Marquinhos, 19

Finally, rounding out our list of Arsenal youngsters to look out for is a summer signing from Brazil. Marquinhos swapped Sao Paulo for North London in July and is featuring for the first team and U21s.

After showing such potential in his homeland, some expected Arsenal to thrust the winger straight into the first team. Instead, they have been careful with his development.

The Brazilian has been with the top squad – but also got five games in Premier League 2. In this competition, he has scored four goals and got two assists. This suggests that he has more than enough ability to play for Arteta.

Arsenal’s newest Brazilian talent has played in the Europa League three times this campaign, scoring on an impressive debut against FC Zurich. Marquinhos also has one Premier League appearance, although this was as a late substitute.

When the fixture list begins to pile up in 2022/23, do not be surprised if Arteta turns to Marquinhos as part of the attack rotation. If this turns out to be the case, then the youngster will be ready to make an impression.

Featured image credit: Getty