Arsenal’s young creative midfielder Dan Crowley is on trial at Go Ahead Eagles ahead of a potential loan move.
The 19-year-old, who had his loan spell with League One side Oxford United cut short this past week, will spend the rest of the current campaign on loan with the Eredivisie outfit if he impresses on a trial period.
He’ll become the fourth Arsenal player to go out on loan in Holland this season, after Kelechi Nwakali, Stefan O’Connor (MVV Maastricht) and Tafari Moore (FC Utrecht) signed deals at the start of the 2016/17 campaign.
The talented Englishman has been regarded as one of Arsenal’s most promising youth prospects in recent years but at 19, hasn’t found the transition to competitive football easy.
His former boss at Oxford, Michael Appleton, is said to have been disappointed by Crowley’s lack of professionalism at times. Coupled with attitude issues, which have since seen his playing time finished at the club, it’s clear that the teenager’s loan spell has ultimately had a sour ending for both parties.
“He’s a 19-year-old lad who has fantastic ability, but his professionalism at times lets him down,” Appleton was quoted as saying after leaving Crowley out of their squad to face Coventry City in the middle of November.
It’s clear to see that despite his ability, Crowley has grown frustrated with the lack of minutes he has played. Something that had been gradually brewing from the start of the season, he was either an unused substitute or not included in Oxford’s matchday squad for 20 of the club’s league matches before reports started to emerge about the rift between both himself and his head coach.
It’s sure to give coaches at London Colney an unwelcome headache once he returns on a permanent basis given his ability to start playing at a competitive level. There is a high chance that he’ll be reluctant to play u23 football, seeing it as a step-down from what he has been aiming to achieve over the past two seasons and this could limit his development if he continues to have issues out on-loan.
Coupled with the fact that Go Ahead Eagles are bottom of Holland’s top division suggests he’ll be tested in a whole new way should he sign until the end of the season. We can only hope Crowley learns from his experiences and continues to mature because having had a previous loan spell (Barnsley, 2015) cut short, questions will continue to arise about whether he has the right mentality to play professionally for a club like Arsenal if he’s conducting himself like this.