Alan Smith names Arsenal signing as Unai Emery’s best player so far
The Arsenal legend believes Matteo Guendouzi has impressed in the early weeks of his Gunners career
Alan Smith believes Matteo Guendouzi has been Arsenal’s best player under new manager Unai Emery so far.
The Gunners signed the French teenager in an £8m deal from Ligue 1 side Lorient in the 2018 summer transfer window.
Guendouzi arrived as a relative unknown at the north London side following a brief stint in the Lorient starting XI.
The Arsenal manager started the teenager in the north London side’s 2-0 loss to defending Premier League champions.
However, the 19-year-old impressed with his performances in the middle of the park despite his lack of experience showing against the title holders.
Emery kept the Arsenal signing in the Gunners team for the short trip across the English capital to Chelsea FC.
Arsenal suffered a 3-2 defeat by the Blues but Guendouzi once again emerged with credit for a tenacious performance.
Former Gunners striker Smith believes Guendouzi has been the best player for Emery in the opening weeks of the season.
“The energy of young Matteo Guendouzi should come into sharp focus,” Smith told the Evening Standard.
“For me, he’s been Arsenal’s best player so far. Raw, perhaps, but the Frenchman never shies away from volunteering for the ball. On top, he never stops running, which, in fairness, you would expect from a keen teenager.”
Arsenal finished in sixth place in the Premier League table last term to miss out on Champions League football for the second successive season.
The Gunners signed five players in the summer transfer window to overhaul Emery’s squad following Arsene Wenger’s back in May.