Arsenal Star Admits He Expected to Be Loaned Out Before Remarkable Rise Into First-Team Set Up

Published on: 15 November 2016

Alex Iwobi has admitted that he is surprised with how quickly he has risen through the ranks into the Arsenal first-team set up.

The winger has enjoyed a remarkable 12 months after bursting onto the scene at the Emirates, and has nailed down a regular starting place in Arsene Wenger's side ever since he made his full first-team debut with an impressive display against Everton back in March.

In an interview with the club's official website, Iwobi was quizzed on his thoughts and feelings over becoming a permanent fixture in the senior squad of the North London side, and the 20-year-old revealed where he thought he'd be at this stage of his career.

He said: "Honestly I didn't expect to be where I am today. I thought a long time ago that I'd be on loan and probably get experience there before having experience in the first team, but the fact that the boss trusted me to jump into the first team as quick as I did, I'm just grateful for it."

With Arsenal's first-team squad packed full of international stars, however, Iwobi knows that he cannot rest on his laurels now that he has done the hard work of forcing his way into Wenger's thoughts.

Such is the depth and quality within the Gunners' ranks, Iwobi has only completed 90 minutes on two occasions this term, and the Nigeria international is fully aware that other established Premier League players are breathing down his neck with the hope of usurping him for a chance under Wenger.

Goals, assists, skills? @alexiwobi has credited something else with his rise to our first team


He added: "The same way I was able to break into it (the first team) is the same way that I take the chance now. I play like it's almost like my last game, I treat it like it's my last moment here, so I do my best and I always put 100 per cent into whatever I do.

"If you don't do as well as you think you could've done, there's other players, other international, great players, that can just step in, so you just have to take the chance all the time and do your best when the time comes.

"The big thing is you need to stay fit and always need to give it your all. I mean, you've got to have the right attitude, you've got to be mentally prepared for whatever happens. Not everything is going to be smooth sailing for you so you've got to be prepared for all conditions."

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