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Arsenal manager Unai Emery is keeping with the club’s philosophy of developing young players and feels the club ‘must stick with them and give them chances.’
The Gunners were held to a goalless draw against Sporting Lisbon in the Europa League but defeated Blackpool in the Carabao Cup and Emery drafted a number of youngsters into the squad, with Emile Smith-Rowe, Joe Willock, Eddie Nketiah and Julio Pleguezuelo all training with the first team ahead of the games.
The competition has always been seen as a testing ground for youngsters by many Premier League managers and Emery has so far proven to be open to using youngsters also.
“We choose 18 players for the Blackpool match, the young players also.” He said when speaking to the club’s official website.
“We had a mix in order to get the best performance against Blackpool, to respect them. For us, the Carabao Cup is very important. It’s an opportunity to win a trophy and also, a chance to play in front of our supporters at Emirates Stadium in this competition.”
Many young players have kickstarted their careers in the competition with the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey among others starting out from the league cup. Speaking on young players starting their career in the competition, he said.
“They need to use the experienced players’ example, how they progress, and learn from them. For us, it’s about sticking with them and giving them responsibility in each training session, the confidence from working for us. Then, when they deserve it, it’s up to us to give them chances in the matches.