When Gedion Zelalem featured in the FA Cup against Coventry City in January 2014 he looked like a future star. His brilliant midfield displays saw him being compared to another former Arsenal youngster, Cesc Fabregas. His vision and technique made it a good comparison.
In May last year, featuring for the USA’s under-20 side at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in South Korea, he came off just 34 minutes into the opening game against Ecuador. He had suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament which left him ruled out for a number of months. After stepping up his recovery in December last year, he soon suffered a setback. In March it was confirmed he was out for the season.
His last appearance for the first-team was in an EFL Cup game with Reading back in October 2016. So will that be his final game for Arsenal?
After returning to training in September he has now been back in action for the club’s under-23 side. Zelalem played in the EFL Cup in the week, as Arsenal took on Forest Green Rovers. He played just 45 minutes, as Arsenal ease him back into action but fans will hope it is the start of an impressive recovery.
His contract in North London comes to an end in the summer and the 21-year-old will need to put in serious hard work to convince Arsenal he can still become the next Fabregas.