Emile Smith Rowe and Jakub Kiwior played for the Arsenal u21s on Monday night, and Mikel Arteta gave his assessment of their performances.
Away to Chelsea on Monday evening, the Arsenal u21s were boosted by starts for senior stars Emile Smith Rowe and Jakub Kiwior.
Speaking in his press conference on Tuesday, Mikel Arteta explained: “Obviously, they needed some minutes and at the moment they haven’t had much exposure for different situations.”
Both players completed 45 minutes, coming off at half-time in pre-planned changes at 0-0.
Smith Rowe had been Arsenal’s most dangerous player in the first half, forcing a great save and seeing another driven shot fly narrowly wide.
A subdued Gunners side did struggle to get the midfielder involved as much as they would’ve liked, but he did well when they got the ball to him.
As for Kiwior, he was the standout player in the first half of the match, pinging passes around with ease and dealing with his defensive work comfortably.
Arteta answered questions about the duo, and hinted they’ll be involved with the first team soon.
“Really good,” Arteta said of Smith Rowe and Kiwior’s u21 performances. “It was great to see them on the field because we’re going to need them in the next couple of games.”
With both players coming off at half-time, it’s not impossible they could still feature for the senior side on Wednesday, though it’s unlikely either of them will be in the starting lineup.
Smith Rowe was involved on the bench against Leicester City and Aston Villa, and Kiwior has made the matchday squad six times since joining, but neither featured on the pitch in a senior game in February.