Arsenal loanee Trae Coyle made his case for further opportunities with a goal in yet another substitute appearance for Gillingham on Saturday.
Seeing Trae Coyle on the bench on the Gillingham teamsheet has become a common occurrence, with the on-loan Arsenal academy winger making the League One starting lineup three times and the bench 11 times this season.
Despite starting and scoring against the Arsenal u23s in the EFL Trophy, Coyle returned to the bench for the next five games in all competitions, coming on as a substitute in four of them.
That comes to a combined 57 minutes on the pitch in those matches, but Coyle made it count this weekend with a goal.
Facing Swindon Town, the 19-year-old came on with his team 1-0 up, but the opposition dominating the chances. It was crucial they scored a second goal, and Coyle put away his only opportunity with a composed effort placed into the corner.
In terms of minutes, Coyle is scoring more regularly than once every two games with Gillingham. The problem is that he only gets half an hour a week, if that. So his four goals are actually spread across 18 appearances.
The teenager needs more regular game-time, and if Gillingham don’t give it to him – even when he’s scoring for them – Arsenal should consider a recall in January. For now, it’s good to see him keeping his head down and making his case.
“If I get the chance to play I will give my all,” Coyle said afterwards. “For my goal, it was a great pass from Dom; I am quite confident when in front of goal, and when I have more time it’s easier for me.”
In other Gillingham news, Arsenal’s other loanee Zech Medley remains absent with injury. He shouldn’t be out for long, and he’s getting plenty of games when fit.