Smith Rowe is one of a number of young players to have come out of Hale End to help revitalise Arsenal’s season, impressing with his displays from a no10 role in recent weeks.
The 20-year-old made his first league start of the season in the Boxing Day win over Chelsea, which started a run of four straight wins, including the FA Cup third round triumph over Newcastle, in which he scored the extra-time opener.
Fellow academy graduate Bukayo Saka has become one of Arsenal’s key men, while the likes of Joe Willock, Eddie Nketiah and Reiss Nelson have all made impressions under Mikel Arteta.
“It’s great,” he told the BBC. “Obviously we all played together from a young age, going through the academy all playing together and now to be playing in the first team is a different feeling.
“When we all step on the pitch together there’s no better feeling. To share it with the players that you’ve grown up with is unbelievable.
“I feel like we’ve got that little extra link-up, we know each other and I feel like that definitely shows on the pitch.”