Arsenal have an abundance of riches with an academy brimming with young talent, many of who are said to have bright futures ahead of them. There is however, one player that has slipped under the mainstream radar and that is not a homegrown prospect. The player in question is Joel Lopez, a 17-year-old former product of Barcelona’s famous La Masia academy joining Arsenal in 2018.
Joel Lopez has since signed a professional deal in March of this year and is thought to be favoured by Per Mertersacker, who considers him to be a jewel that is destined for good things.
On that kind of recommendation, it was always highly likely that he would find himself in Unai Emery’s plans for the Europa League or domestic cups and that’s exactly what has happened.
Joel Lopez is being fast tracked in a role that will provide real competition in the future for new arrival Kieran Tierney, so anyone thinking that Emery is dragging his feet with the available youth players needs to think again.
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There is certainly a Spanish flavour developing at the Emirates and who can blame them because Arsenal in particular have had a lot of success in the past with Spanish imports such as Fabregas, Monreal, Cazorla, Bellerin and more recently the loan deal of Dani Cabellos.
Joel Lopez is a left-back who fits the Arsenal profile, blessed with pace and an attack minded attitude, but he is also a determined defender who gets his foot in and is naturally combative and brave.
Big things ahead ? Let’s hope so, an endorsement from thse BFG (Mertersacker) can’t be ignored.