Having been appointed the club’s interim Academy manager, we profile 37-year-old Luke Hobbs.

Hobbs joined Arsenal back in July of 2013, having had previous experience at three professional football clubs before his arrival.

Community officer at Peterborough United, he was then named Cambridge United’s centre of excellence manager before becoming head of coaching at Southend United.

Ivan Gazidis’s comments make the appointment seem an unsurprising decision from the club’s hierarchy and he’ll be keen to repay their faith in his abilities. Although there have already been reports linking a number of names with the job on a permanent basis, Hobbs himself has plenty to gain from this.

Effects of Jonker’s departure and Hobbs’ role going forward

The timing of Andries Jonker’s departure was surprising, even given the number of managerial changes in the Bundesliga this term. The highly-respected Dutchman worked closely with Steve Gatting in the u23s but Hobbs is likely to focus on the younger age-groups.

Hobbs (R) pictured during his days at Southend as their head of coaching. (Photo source: Southend’s official website)

Having obtained his UEFA A License and FA Advanced Youth Awards from u12 to u16 level, expect him to quietly stake his claim for the job on a permanent basis if Arsenal are unable to secure someone with more experience. Dennis Bergkamp, Pep Segura and Steve Morrow are all in the frame, as we reported yesterday.

Simon Copley, Greg Lincoln, Jan van Loon and Trevor Bumstead are all coaches from u13 to u16 level, who are expected to work alongside Hobbs.

Although he’s only in charge on a temporary basis for the moment, we wish Luke the best of luck in his new role whilst club bosses assess the long-term options for a new Academy manager.

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