18-year-old midfielder Gedion Zelalem is currently playing for the United States under-20 World Cup team, but they fell in a quarterfinals match.
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The U.S. team lost, 1-0, to Serbia on penalties. Zelalem is also playing for the under-20 Arsenal team, and he is looking to make the first team in the Premier League next season.
“I’m going to go back for preseason and try to get into the first team and play some games. If I can do that, great. If not, I’ll look to get out on loan somewhere,” Zelalem said to ESPN FC.
Zelalem also expressed his disappointment that the United States under-20 World Cup team was not able to the finals or win any tournaments.
Arsenal is looking to upgrade their midfield, and they may be in luck if Zelalem is ready to make the jump to Arsenal’s first team.
They are hoping to find scoring threats outside of forwards Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud, who each finished with at least 14 goals in the 2014-15 season.
The Gunners did not give any immediate playing time to their players who are under 20, so it seems unlikely that Zelalem will be able to make the first team.
However, the Gunners’ lack of midfield depth may enable him to defy last season’s history and break out sooner than expected.