Miguel Azeez insists he’s enjoying his time at Portsmouth so far, and he’s hoping his weekend start will lead to further opportunities.

Miguel Azeez playing for Portsmouth (Photo via Azeez on Twitter)
Miguel Azeez playing for Portsmouth (Photo via Azeez on Twitter)

After a month and a half without any minutes at all, Miguel Azeez has started to become more involved in the Portsmouth side over the last week.

First, he made a substitute appearance in the League One game against Cheltenham Town last Tuesday. Then, he made a start in the FA Cup on Saturday, playing an hour.

Arsenal fans have been concerned that the 19-year-old hasn’t featured more regularly, but Danny Cowley recently claimed Arsenal are happy with how Portsmouth are dealing with the loan, and it’s all for the good of the player.

Speaking to the club website after his FA Cup start, Azeez seemed to share that sentiment.

“I was really pleased (to get a start) and have been working hard in training in order to get the opportunity,” Azeez said. “Hopefully I can stay in the side and be able to build on this because I’ve been learning a lot – both on and off the pitch.

“I’ll play anywhere, but I enjoyed the role I was given because it allowed me to express myself in an attacking sense.

“It means that when we were able to win back possession, I was closer to the goal in order to make an impact.

“I’m enjoying my time here and it’s helped my development as a player, with the mental side just as important as the physical and technical.”

If Azeez’s recent opportunities are a sign of things to come, then there genuinely isn’t much reason to worry. It’s not a problem for a player to need some time to integrate, or for the manager to have a plan in mind for the right time to introduce them.

We just don’t have much evidence of that yet. One cup start against a lower-league side still pales in comparison to the seven league games in a row where Azeez has been fit to make the squad but hasn’t started.

For me, the jury is still out. But the last week of football and the quotes from Cowley and Azeez are certainly all encouraging.