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How Folarin Balogun will get minutes for Arsenal next season

How Folarin Balogun will get minutes for Arsenal next season

Balogun’s commitment

Folarin Balogun signed a new deal at Arsenal earlier this year when it seemed for some time he could leave the club.

His previous deal was set to expire with the club but he decided to renew and fight for his place.

101 conducted an in-depth analysis with the help of some expert insight so you can find out all you need to know about the striker here.

Upon signing his new deal Balogun said that his ambition was to earn minutes with the senior side.

“My ambitions for next season are to make an impact in the first team. I see it as something that I’ve taken upon myself to be able to go over there and make an impact, not just be one of the numbers,” he said.

“I want to be somebody who eventually leads that group, so I would say I have quite driven ambitions. We’ll see if I can make them happen.”

Expected to compete

Balogun is indeed expected to compete with the other members of the first team squad next season for selection.

football.london’s Chris Wheatley reported that the club are looking to see Balogun fight for his place in the team when preseason begins.

Arsenal have preseason friendlies in Florida competing in a mini-tournament with Inter Milan, Everton and Colombian side Millonarios. They will also play Rangers and Hibernian with possibly more friendlies planned before the season starts.

Where could he get opportunities?

The problem which Balogun faces is initially who is in front of him.

Both Pierre Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette are considerably more experienced and established squad members.

One could yet leave the club with the latter being linked with a move away recently.

Beyond them, youngsters Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Martinelli also have eyes on a central striking role. Again further links see Nketiah touted with a move away, this time being offered to Leeds United. This could further thin the crowd for Balogun.

One of the biggest problems for Balogun is the fact Arsenal have no European football next season. Spurs’ win at Leicester City on the final day meant that they pipped Arsenal to 7th place and qualified for the new UEFA Conference League competition.

Some might be relieved not to see Arsenal in the third tier tournament however it would have been an opportunity to blood more youth.

With no European football, there will be more emphasis on progressing through the cup competitions such as the League and FA Cups. Balogun could initially earn some minutes here. There is also always the possibility to come off the bench to take chances.

Balogun has high expectations, next season could see him follow in the footsteps of Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith-Rowe.

Mikel Arteta outlines what Emile Smith Rowe must do to compete with Europe’s top midfielders

Mikel Arteta outlines what Emile Smith Rowe must do to compete with Europe’s top midfielders


This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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