18 goals in 23 games - The super striker Arsenal already own

Chuba Akpom

Arsenal young gun Chuba Akpom is showing why a first team chance cannot be far away.

Chuba Akpom hit another goal for Arsenal's under-21 side tonight, in their 2-1 win over Wolves, which saw Hector Bellerin hit a late winner.

Akpom himself has quite a phenomenal record this season at the level. For club and country he has an astounding 18 goals in 23 games, prolific by almost anyone's standards.

While in the first half of the campaign he started slowly, three in 10 games, since the turn of the year and with the beginning of the under-21 Elite Group stage, he has kicked it up a notch.

Akpom has bagged 10 goals in his last nine games, which included strikes past under-21 sides of Tottenham and Manchester United.

For his country he has equally as dangerous. This season for England under-19's he has scored five goals in four friendly matches.

It all shows why the striker is so highly regarded by Arsene Wenger, doing his talking on the pitch and simply going about his business.

Back in December, Wenger indicated he would not be able to hold him back much longer, and that time where he gets an opportunity cannot be far off, for he was even named on the bench in a Champions League clash with Olympiakos back in December.

The manager said at the time: "He has personality [and] he has quality,”

“I wanted him to be with the first team, taste what it is [to be involved] in a Champions League game, and hopefully he will join us very quickly. It could happen very soon.

“He’s more a guy who likes to participate in the build up, a guy who is brave, a guy who makes good runs and is not a typical goal chaser.

“Where he must improve is to finish things off. But he creates for others, he creates for himself, and just needs to be a bit calmer for the finishing. That’s something he will get easily."

Unfortunately for Akpom, Arsenal have had the type of season which has not made it a conducive one for throwing in youngsters, such has been the club's struggle at times, and pressure on the present first team players and manager.

If Arsenal were in the luxurious position of Manchester United, with the league already won and with games to spare, or even mid-table with nothing to play for, Akpom would get his chance, but at the moment it is unlikely in must-win games, even with Giroud suspended.

However Wenger could do worse than throw Akpom, a player in-form onto the bench if he is short on options and needs to turn a game, for he could even have a 'Macheda moment' as the young Italian famously did at Old Trafford in 2010.

More likely is that Akpom will get his opportunities in pre-season. The 17-year-old's form is demanding attention, when he gets his chance it will be up to him to run with it.

Are you excited about Akpom? What does the immediate future hold for him?

image: © nextgenphoto

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