It’s a question that will need answering within the next four seasons as Arsenal potentially part company with the current strike force. So let’s imagine you are Mikel Arteta, Aubameyang has gone, so has Lacazette and you need two strikers to fill their shoes. Your options are Eddie Nketiah, Gabriel Martinelli, Tyreece John-Jules, and Folarin Balogun. Whom would you choose?
Nketiah continues to be a useful alternative upfront but for some reason, I’m not keen. He scores goals and has an eye for goal and at his age (21), he could develop into a decent striker, with time is on his side.
In four years from now, he could easily bulk up a bit and be a real threat, an Ian Wright type of player. A quick, naturally instinctive predator who bags 20 plus goals every season.
Due back from injury, Martinelli (19) set pulses racing with his exciting potential, and no doubt had he been available, Nketiah may not have had as many opportunities. In my opinion, he has a discernible edge over others because of his quick thinking, vision, and balance but will he be the same after his recent knee injury?
Rest assured that Arsenal will look after this gem and gradually introduce him back into the side. I see him as a regular starter and future star in Arsenal colours.
A quality young striker just waiting for his break, which, if he gets it, could certainly stir things up with his rivals. He’s a potent force in front of the goal and is fortunate to have a real presence. John-Jules (19) could claim a starting place in most Premier League sides, even with his relative lack of experience.
Fast forward four years and he could be one of the first names on the team sheet. There have been enquiries for his services but they’ve all been swiftly shut down, this lad isn’t going anywhere!
If this lad leaves Arsenal, it will be one of the most shameful decisions in many years because I believe him to be ready and in advance of everyone, except Gabby Martinelli. Balogun (19) is a natural striker with blistering pace, full of imagination and creativity at the top end of the pitch.
In 19 appearances for Arsenal’s under 18’s, he scored 25 goals including two hat-tricks and four goals in one match, which equates to a goal every 62 minutes. It’s no wonder Arsenal want serious money for him. I’m sad that he could be another untapped talent that leaves before he gets his chance, therefore, unless he changes his mind, he won’t be around to take his rightful place in the first team.
Eddie Nketiah, Gabriel Martinelli, Tyreece John-Jules, and Folarin Balogun – all four are very exciting prospects and certainly have a bright future ahead. However, the choice rests on Arteta to decide which players he sees as the future forwards of his team.