Arsenal loanee Miguel Azeez wasn’t called up to the England u20s over the November break, but that’s turned out to be a good thing.
A week before the international break got underway, Miguel Azeez had only made one start and one substitute appearance for Portsmouth on loan from Arsenal.
After the midfielder got a rare chance in the starting lineup in the FA Cup last Saturday against Harrow Borough, he was left out of the England u20 squad for the break.
Initially, that seemed to be a response to his lack of match action with Portsmouth, but it’s turning out to be a very good decision.
With no international duty to take him away, Azeez got the chance to start in the EFL Trophy in midweek.
The 19-year-old scored his first Portsmouth goal, which was a vital one to help them progress in the competition on goals scored.
— Portsmouth FC (@Pompey) November 10, 2021
Evidently impressed by Azeez’s recent progress, Portsmouth boss Danny Cowley then named him in the starting lineup in League One on Saturday.
He played 68 minutes of a 1-0 win, creating a couple of chances including one ‘big chance’.
If Azeez had gone away with England, as he did in October, he’d be returning to Portsmouth this week still searching for a way back into the league lineup.
After his goal and assist against the Czech Republic u20s in October, Azeez went straight back onto the Portsmouth bench, so there was little hope of using international performances to win favour.
Instead, Azeez stuck around and has seemingly managed to kickstart his loan.
The next challenge is to try and hold down his spot. I wouldn’t expect the young loanee to become a guaranteed starter right away, but things are at least heading in the right direction.