Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has revealed that Reiss Nelson turned down a possible loan move in the summer transfer window in order to fight for his place at the Emirates Stadium.
The 20-year-old has long looked like a bright prospect at Arsenal after rising up through their academy, and he previously impressed in a loan spell with Hoffenheim in 2018/19.
Arsenal fans will no doubt be rooting for Nelson as he bids to play more regularly in the senior side, with other academy graduates like Bukayo Saka and Ainsley Maitland-Niles managing to become key players for Arteta in recent times.
Discussing Nelson’s situation, Arteta was quoted by the Independent as admitting the club had planned to loan the youngster out this season, but he ultimately decided he preferred to stay in north London.
“We had a few plans in mind with Reiss. One of them was as well to send him on loan to get more minutes because of the competition we have upfront,” the Spanish tactician said.
“The reality is he has been really good in training. He wants to stay here. He wants to fight for his place.”
He added: “Reiss was really convinced that he wanted to fight to stay here.
“When you see that willingness and that passion and that security in a player you feel tempted to keep him even though you know that opportunities are going to be restricted and he is not going to have a lot of continuity in his play.
“But things change very quickly and if he starts playing and playing well and he does what he can do, why not? He could start to play more games.”
Arsenal fans will be impressed with his determination and it will be interesting to see if it pays off for him.