Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta tells FFT who told him to bring Ethan Nwaneri on at West Ham

Ethan Nwaneri on the ball for Arsenal against West Ham in the Premier League in February 2024.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has revealed what really happened to bring Ethan Nwaneri into the game for his second senior appearance. 

The Gunners thrashed West Ham United 6-0 at the London Stadium on Sunday, with 16-year-old Nwaneri making a 15-minute cameo from the bench.

Arsenal fans have clamoured for the wonderkid to see more minutes since his debut as a 15-year against Brentford in September 2022 and gave the teenager a stunning reception.

Now, Arteta has told FourFourTwo that he was pressured into bringing the young midfielder into the fray – but not by fans...

"There's something that you have to have when you're in a team, and that's the trust of your team-mates," he said.

"I had two things: one, the players on the bench whispering, 'Bring Ethan on,' and two, when your team-mates want to give you the ball all the time.

"If they do that, they must really trust you and you can see how many times they gave him the ball from that. So a great sign."

Nwaneri, who has featured heavily for England at Under-16 and U-17 level, replaced Gabriel Martinelli with 77 minutes on the clock at the London Stadium.

The youngster, who was born in March 2007, saw much of the ball in his time on the pitch and Arsenal fans will be hoping to see more of him again soon.

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