Mikel Arteta has said that Reiss Nelson is special and in line to get an opportunity for Arsenal ahead of their Europa League tie on Thursday – in comments reported by Football London.
Nelson has had a turbulent time at Arsenal over the last year or so. He started the opening game of the last Premier League season. However, he spent the majority of the last campaign out on loan with Feyenoord.
The attacking midfielder did well in The Netherlands, scoring four goals and contributing seven assists in all competitions. And with that, he has been back in the fold at the Emirates this year.
Nelson is yet to actually feature this season, largely due to injury. But he was on the bench for the curtain-raiser against Crystal Palace, as well as Saturday’s North London derby.
And ahead of their European clash with Bodo/Glimt, Arteta has suggested that Nelson is set to get his chance.
“We wanted him back to see if we can take him to the next level. Reiss is special and now he is going to have an opportunity,” he said, as reported by Football London.
It would be brilliant for Arsenal if Nelson could now find some form. Of course, the club have previously had incredibly high hopes for the 22-year-old.
It seemed more recently that he had lost his way somewhat. But Arteta is clearly optimistic that he has a lot to offer the current side.
It would be a big boost for the Gunners if he did shine. Arsenal, of course, have lost Emile Smith Rowe to injury for the time-being. He leaves a major void. But Nelson has the talent to make an impact.
Admittedly, it is surely going to take a lot for Nelson to make the grade as a regular fixture in the Arsenal side. But few would have imagined just how quickly Smith Rowe would adapt to first-team football.
Obviously, Nelson has previously had more than a taste of an opportunity for Arsenal. But his loan spell and Arteta’s belief may leave him with a new level of confidence.
It will be fascinating to see how he fares when the chance comes his way.