Saturday, September 30, 2023

Arsenal star ready to leave if Mikel Arteta does not start him regularly - Reports

Arsenal midfielder Emile Smith Rowe could reportedly look to leave the club in January if he doesn’t get regular playing time.

The English midfielder made his first start after 499 days in the Gunners’ 1-0 win at Brentford in the EFL Cup third round on September 27. He played 82 minutes, having previously featured for just 24 minutes across three appearances this season.

As per 90min, Smith Rowe is hoping to be in consideration for England’s squad for the 2024 Euros but he will need to play regularly. Hence, if Arsenal cannot offer him regular playing time, Smith Rowe might choose to leave in the January transfer window.

Aston Villa had previously shown interest in signing him while Newcastle United and Brighton & Hove Albion are also interested. As per Transfermarkt, Smith Rowe’s market value is €35 million with his contract expiring in 2026.

The Gunners could demand a higher fee, making it tough for foreign clubs to sign him. However, they could look to make a six-month loan offer for the midfielder.

Smith Rowe, 23, came through Arsenal’s academy before making his senior debut in 2020. He had an excellent 2021-22 season, registering 11 goals and two assists in 33 Premier League games.

However, due to injuries, he has made only 13 league appearances since.

Arsenal’s Emile Smith Rowe on confidence issues and how Mikel Arteta helped him

The English midfielder could make only 15 appearances across competitions last season as he suffered from a groin injury. He underwent surgery and needed an extended period to recover.

Hence, it’s understandable that Smith Rowe suffered from some confidence issues when he returned to action. The Arsenal midfielder recently shared how he overcame that and how Mikel Arteta helped him, saying (via 90min):

“I have changed a bit of my mentality…just to go for it. I have not really got anything to lose. I have tried to change that inside me. I used to have a lot of doubts. I used to question my confidence, at times. But now I am really strong. I am feeling really fit and I am taking that into now.”
He added:

“The gaffer has really helped me with that. He was helping me through my injury and often pulled me for chats about how I can be mentally stronger. I tried to support the boys as much as I could when I couldn’t help them on the pitch. It was really tough but I am stronger now.”
Smith Rowe could next feature for Arsenal in their Premier League clash at Bournemouth on Saturday, September 30.

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