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The Arsenal Loan Company

The Arsenal Loan Company

Following hot on the heels of defender Havard Nordveit who has joined Spanish 2nd division side Salamanca on a season long loan Nacer Barazite is to join Derby, at least until the end of the year.

The 18 year old Dutch forward had a prolific season in the reserves side scoring 18 goals and providing plenty of assists but such is the progress of some of these young players that reserve team football doesn`t provide enough of a challenge for them to develop further. Earlier this year Wenger highlighted the pace with which players of 16 upwards are now progressing through the reserve sides but are not quite ready for Premier League football.

"At the moment we play the young players so quickly in the Reserve team — at 16 or 17 — that at 18 and 19 there is sometimes no challenge for them anymore," admits Wenger. "But it is still a little bit too early for them to play in the first team at Arsenal. So there is a little gap period for them.

"We always think about how we can use this period for the benefit for the boy and the club. One of the solutions is to get them into clubs where they can get first-team experience."

At one time a loan arrangement might have signalled a path out of the club. Four seasons ago 11 youngsters were loaned to other clubs, including Bentley, Pennant, Svard and Stack - none found their way back to the club. The following season 7 players took up temporary assignments elsewhere. These included Hoyte who has now left the club and Carlos Vela who was parked in Spain until he could get a work permit. The season before last 12 players were loaned to other clubs. Bendtner and Song came back to claim places as fairly solid first team squad members. Others including Muamba, Larsson, Lupoli and Stokes left the club. Of the 7 loanees last season Djourou can best lay claim to a solid place in the first team squad while Fran Merida received some acclaim for his stint at Real Sociedad. Mathew Connolly is the only one so far to leave the club.

Not all young players are treated the same. Walcott, Ramsey and Wilshere are all apparently deemed close enough to the first team not to need external experience. The numbers of good quality players being produced means that the loan system will continue to be fully utilised but there should be enough encouragement now for players to believe that it is possible to develop their abilities elsewhere without jeopardising their chances of progressing at the club.

It is rumoured that Kieran Gibbs might go on loan to Reading having spent some time at Norwich last season but surely the most patient loanee is full back Kerrea Gilbert who is spending this season at Leceister having spent the last two full seasons out on loan.

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Date:Tuesday August 19 2008
Time: 5:34PM


Seems to me that as soon as you leave Arsenal on loan, you are almost certain to leave for good - suppose its the same for most big clubs.
19/08/2008 18:28:00
Barazite and Nordveit definately need these loans, as do Merida and Gibbs. They are the most obvious ones in the 'gap period' Arsene refers to. Personally, I think a loan for Wilshere next season would be good, although he may prove me wrong and be ready for enough first-team cameos to make a decent season by then.
19/08/2008 18:31:00
Marron, players like Nordveit, Barazite, Merida and Bendtner have all been sent on loan very recently, but Arsene clearly has high hopes for them, believing that they can get into the 1st team. Others in the past also have found this.
19/08/2008 18:33:00
I am fully in favour of the loan system. Its worked well and has twin advantages - if the player impresses on loan but is still not good enough for Arsenal, there's a club thats willing to take him and give him a career. And if he'd good enough for Arsenal like Bendtner, then he is always welcome back to the squad.
19/08/2008 20:35:00
marron, I think the point of the article is that used to be the case, but is not necessarily so with this generation of players. Why spend a fortune in the transfer market if, with a bit of patience we could grow our own? Arsene was very frustrated last season when some of the players he sent on loan were not getting the opportunities to play. Norwich, for example had so many loanees that they were struggling to give them all time as there are restrictions on how many can play at one time. Kerrea Gilbert's 2 previous loan spells have not been productive at all, it is only now at Leicester that he seems to be getting regular games. There are also rumors floating around that the Barazite deal has a month by month clause whereby if he is not playing, Arsenal can recall him sooner than the end of the year.
19/08/2008 21:22:00
Young Guns has this interesting bit to report - Havard "Howie" Nordtveit said that if there's too competition around the CB spots for him to get some games at Salamanca, he's willing to play in DM. I don't recall seeing him in any position other than CB for the reserves. I'm all for youngsters learning the trade in different positions so why not. Wish him good luck!
Lou the Gunneress
19/08/2008 23:07:00
does anyone know anything about how Pedro Botelho is doing at salamanca?
19/08/2008 23:41:00
You hear the lastest in for Silvestre!
20/08/2008 01:10:00
Can only help the young players develop as footballers by playing more competitive first team football else where.
20/08/2008 02:22:00
Silvestre to Arsenal is in keeping with our annual "by a French bloke from a close rival on deadline day" hootenanny. Who next year? Anelka? Cantona? Platini?
Little Dutch
20/08/2008 09:26:00
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