Unai Emery will not send Emile Smith Rowe out on loan in January, stating that it is in the club’s interest to keep him with the first-team squad.
Although he has missed the last number of weeks with a hip injury, Emile Smith Rowe’s star still shines brightly after scoring two goals in four games this season – twice the number of top-flight goals as Alexis Sanchez in 18/19.
With the transfer window now open, many expected the club to send Smith Rowe on loan to allow him regular playing time, but Unai Emery is planning no such thing.
Speaking at his press conference ahead of the game against Blackpool, Emery was asked if a loan was an option for the 18-year-old. “In the summer there was interest,” Emery replied, “but now it is not our interest.”
Smith Rowe has yet to make his Premier League debut but that has been more to do with his injury than anything else.
“I usually work with young players and give them the opportunity to work with us,” Emery added.
“Give them chances to play but only if we can get the victory. My responsibility is to work with them and here I want to do that. But each player is going to earn in his way more or less chances with his performances and his everyday work.
“When they are playing with Freddie in the Under-23 we are looking at their performances and their attitude, if it’s OK or not. And at the moment we are going to continue in this way. We know they can train with us and start playing matches, but it is very difficult. We need to help them and give them these chances.”
Smith Rowe has returned to fitness ahead of schedule. He travelled with the squad to Blackpool was not involved.