Bukayo Saka was the talking point of Arsenal’s 1-1 draw against Manchester United at Old Trafford on Monday and received praise from coaches and pundits after his performance.
Arsenal’s No. 77 has been in and around the first team this season for Unai Emery’s men after an injury to the French forward Alexandre Lacazette meant that the young Englishman was given the chance at football’s highest level in England. So far, he has taken full advantage of the opportunity that’s been presented to him by the manager, scoring in the Europa League against Eintracht Frankfurt during the Gunners’ 3-0 victory at the Commerzbank-Arena.
Saka, 18, can play on both wings but is also capable of playing right back. He has played for both Arsenal U18s and U23s and currently competes at an international level for England U19s. After scoring 16 goals in 26 games for the U18s and six goals in 25 games for the U23s, it’s easy to understand why Emery believed that Saka was ready to play for the first-team.
On the back of his performance in Europe, he topped that by impressing against Manchester United in the Premier League on one of the biggest stages in world football. He outshone his multi-million-pound teammate Nicolas Pepe, who was substituted late in the second half as the Ivorian failed to make an impact on the game.
Quoted by the Metro, Emery said: “I think he’s working and improving, being mature and playing matches in front of each team, tonight it was Manchester United, but his work is natural.”
With more opportunities expected for the 18-year-old, the youngster will be able to understand the system that the manager is trying to implement and link with his fellow strikers to score goals.