Arsenal legend: 'Wenger could turn Sanogo into this ex-Gunners star...'

Arsenal warm up

Arsenal legend Martin Keown believes that Arsenal striker Yaya Sanogo could become the next Emmanuel Adebayor under Arsene Wenger.

Sanogo was brought to North London from French side Auxerre in the summer, and got a surprise start in the big FA Cup tie against Liverpool last weekend, but his impressive display earned him an even more shocking starting role in Arsenal's crucial Champions League first leg against Bayern Munich.

The 21-year-old had to lead the line on his own last night, and his task became even more difficult when Wojciech Szczesny was sent off, forcing manager Arsene Wenger to sacrifice midfielder Santi Cazorla for Lukasz Fabianski.

Some Gunners fans have made a premature comparison to Thierry Henry for Sanogo, but ex-Arsenal defender Martin Keown believes the youngster should be compared to a different striker who graced Highbury and the Emirates Stadium.

"It was a surprise to see Arsene Wenger select Yaya Sanogo up front for such a big game, but the French forward got into some good positions," Keown told the Daily Mail.

"He is still a work in progress but he is a spirited player. When you look at how Wenger worked to improve Emmanuel Adebayor, you wonder if he can do the same thing with Sanogo,” he added.

Adebayor arrived in North London in 2006 in a £3m move from Monaco, and 62 goals in 142 appearances for Arsenal, before completing a controversial move to Manchester City in 2009. His infamous celebration having scored against his former club has made him one of the least popular figures amongst Gunners fans, and his move to Tottenham has done little to dispel the hatred, but they will almost certainly be hoping that Sanogo's career trajectory doesn't take the same path, and that he becomes an Arsenal great in years to come.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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