View: Ethan Nwaneri would be left disappointed as Arsenal exclude him from US pre-season tour

Arsenal have announced that their first team squad have departed for the United States for their pre-season tour.

Emile Smith Rowe and Thomas Partey will join the 27-man squad next week, but Ethan Nwaneri is not on the list.

While the Gunners mentioned that the players who are not part of the squad will be working hard on their fitness and/or recovering from injury, it appears the decision to omit the 16-year-old has nothing to do with a fitness issue.

Nwaneri featured in the 1-1 draw against Nurnberg in Germany on Thursday, coming on in the 60th minute.

He recently committed his future to Arsenal after much speculation and amid links to Manchester City and Chelsea.

Nwaneri also featured in the behind-closed-doors friendly against Watford at London Colney last weekend and would have been hoping to make Mikel Arteta’s US squad.

It is safe to say the young midfielder would be disappointed by the decision, with Amario Cozier-Duberry the only academy player travelling to America.

Nwaneri became Arsenal’s and the Premier League’s youngest-ever player when he featured against Brentford aged 15 last term.

He impressed against Nurnbeg last week, showing some glimpses of his ability with clever passes and movement.

Nwaneri was initially deployed as an attacking midfielder but later moved to the right flank and was quick to get on the ball and demand possession.

His close control, skill and confident progressive play would have impressed Arteta, but it appears the Spaniard is taking his time and will continue to hope the teenager keeps developing.

Nwaneri still has a lot of years ahead of him and should not be in a rush to be involved with the first team.

However, having tasted senior football action, the kid would be eager to be constantly involved with the boys, and leaving him at home will likely hurt.

Nwaneri would probably be involved with the under-21s while Arsenal remain in the US, and he needs to keep impressing the coaches and remain consistent if he wants to force his way into the first team permanently.

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