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Manchester United, Chelsea ‘among clubs interested in Arsenal’s Ethan Nwaneri’

Manchester United, Chelsea ‘among clubs interested in Arsenal’s Ethan Nwaneri’

Manchester United and Chelsea are reportedly among the clubs looking to sign Arsenal history-maker Ethan Nwaneri.

The 2007-born midfielder became the youngest-ever player in Premier League history when he came on as a substitute against Brentford aged just 15 years and 181 days.

Nwaneri broke the previous record held by Harvey Elliott, who made his top-flight debut for Fulham aged 16 years and 30 days, when he replaced Fabio Vieira in second-half injury time in that 3-0 win.

The teenager – who primarily operates as a number 10 – has also been capped by England at Under-16 and Under-17 level and has quickly risen through the youth ranks at Arsenal.

Nwaneri’s historic Premier League appearance has unsurprisingly piqued the interest of other clubs, and according to The Secret Scout, as many as four teams are keen to poach him from the Emirates.

Big months ahead. As Man United, Liverpool, Man City and Chelsea look to sign Ethan Nwaneri

Will this help Arsenal chances. Only time will tell

— TheSecretScout (@TheSecretScout_) September 18, 2022

Man United and Chelsea are reported to be tracking Nwaneri’s progress, while fellow Big Six sides Manchester City and Liverpool are also keen on the 15-year-old.

Chelsea dipped into Arsenal’s academy ranks in the summer to sign Omari Hutchinson from their London rivals, with the Jamaica international failing to agree a new contract with the Gunners.

Meanwhile, Man City and Liverpool are both believed to have been keeping tabs on Bukayo Saka‘s contract situation, but the 21-year-old is now expected to commit to a new deal at the Emirates.

Nwaneri has registered four goals and four assists in nine appearances for Arsenal’s Under-18s and made his debut for the Under-21s in a 4-1 Premier League 2 win over Blackburn Rovers on September 3, playing 59 minutes and setting up a goal for Charles Sagoe Jr.

After making Nwaneri the youngest player to ever play in the Premier League, Gunners boss Mikel Arteta revealed that he listened to a “gut feeling” to hand the teenager his first minutes at the top level.

“It was a pure gut feeling. I met the boy (and) really liked what I saw. Per Mertesacker and the academy staff are giving me really good information, Edu as well,” Arteta told reporters at his post-game press conference.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta pictured on September 18, 2022© Reuters

“I met him, he’s trained a couple of times with us. Yesterday he had to come because we have injuries, especially the injury of Martin (Odegaard), and then I had that feeling from yesterday that if the opportunity could come that I was going to do it and I just done it.

“I told him yesterday that he was going to be with us and that I want him to experience how it is to be in the hotel, to do a preparation of the game to be around the boys and that he had to be ready.

“If you’re going to be on that bench you have to be ready. The boy just looks in your eyes and he’s ready. I don’t know what it is for him. When I met him, when I look at him, I had that feeling.”

Nwaneri was also labelled a “very, very special” player by midfielder Granit Xhaka, who has been observing the midfielder in action for the Under-16s while obtaining his coaching licence.

Prior to being taken off for Nwaneri against Brentford, Vieira marked his first Premier League start with a stunning long-range goal after William Saliba and Gabriel Jesus had headed home in the first half.

The Gunners head into the international break still top of the table with 18 points from their first seven games of the season, one clear of Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur.

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