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Young midfielder eligible for Nigeria, Spain, England, India trains with Arsenal first team before Brentford clash

Posted : 08 March 2024

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta reportedly closely observed the promising central midfielder Zac Shuaib in preparation for the team's Premier League clash against Brentford at the Emirates Stadium.

On Friday, Arsenal youth team expert Jeorge Bird revealed that the Spanish tactician elevated two teenagers of Nigerian descent to first-team training, the other being Anglo-Nigerian-Egyptian fullback Cam'ron Ismail.

During the pre-match press conference ahead of Brentford's visit, Arteta did not provide injury updates on fullbacks Takehiro Tomiyasu (calf), Oleksandr Zinchenko (calf), or Jurrien Timber (ACL). It is speculated that Shuaib and Ismail were called up to train with the first team to bolster the numbers.

Considering the presence of experienced midfielders Mo Elneny, Emile Smith Rowe, Thomas Partey, Fabio Vieira, Kai Havertz, and Declan Rice in Thursday's training, the chances of Shuaib making the matchday squad seem slim.

Shuaib is eligible to represent Nigeria through his father, Spain and India through his mother, and is also qualified to play for the Young Lions as he grew up in England.

In the current season, Shuaib has featured in four matches in the U18 Premier League, while Ismail has played in ten games and has been called up for development squad matches in the EFL Trophy and Premier League 2 without earning minutes.

Both Nigeria-eligible players are in the first year of their scholarships at Arsenal, with the left-back now eligible to sign a professional contract after celebrating his seventeenth birthday last November.


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