Having made his first-team debut in January two years ago, Gedion Zelalem has previously been tipped for future stardom and it seems only a matter of time before he asserts his credentials in the senior side.

With the likes of Hector Bellerín and Alex Iwobi breaking through into the first-team proper over the past two years, Zelalem represents the upcoming crop of players looking to make their mark.

Alongside players such as Daniel Crowley, Chris Willock, Stefan O’Connor and Krystian Bielik, the next twelve months are pivotal with regards to their respective developmental paths.

Considering he’s still only 19, there’s plenty of time for Zelalem to keep improving.

His main strengths include an impressive passing range, technical ability and his dribbling is equally good also.

If he does go on another loan spell next term, he shouldn’t return back to Rangers. A slightly controversial statement to make considering his public comments in April, I have my reasons.

Zelalem (pictured, right) on international duty with US’ under-23 squad last October. | Image: Zimbio

Having already experienced the culture, atmosphere and way of living in Scotland, as well as embracing the conditions – which in itself is easier said than done – he should be open to a new challenge, one where he’s potentially closer to home and consequently gets more exposure.

Some critics have suggested Gedion is not yet at the level to justify regular minutes at a competitive rate: mainly due to his physicality, considering the position he plays.

Someone that can play in a deep-lying playmaker role, as well as a more attacking area of the pitch (CAM), people argue that he needs to bulk up and have more of an imposing presence in possession. He would be able to prove he has been improving his defensive work off-the-ball by going to another league, the Championship or potentially even the Premier League, for instance.

In the example of Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Ipswich) and Jon Toral (Birmingham City), loan spells can quite often be more beneficial than risky – where experience is gained and important lessons are learned, even off the pitch.

Either this, or a potential stay within the first-team ranks could also be on the cards.

Jon Toral (centre) flourished on loan at Birmingham, and is in line for a senior spot in the Arsenal side next season. | Image: Getty

Zelalem turned 19 in January and could feature in a similar role to that of Iwobi toward the end of 2015: gradually knocking on the door for first-team minutes, provided he takes his chance (if given) in pre-season.

Wenger himself has already shown his belief in what the future holds for the club, and there’s no reason why Zelalem cannot cement his spot in the first-team properly next term.