Folarin Balogun is a talented forward who has received rave reviews for his performances at the U-23 level for Arsenal.
With few playing opportunities in the senior team, Folarin wants to leave Arsenal in January.
The opportunity to play elite football is one of the main setbacks for young players as they strive to aid their development. A few top clubs in Europe are youth-centric, giving opportunities to young stars to thrive. Some of those clubs include Ajax, Borussia Dortmund and Barcelona.
It is for reasons like this that many young players fade out. Players who start in the academies of major clubs seldom get the opportunities they crave at the senior level and are eventually farmed out to smaller clubs to garner experience.
A few examples abound. Chelsea have a vibrant academy that churns out quality players regularly. Without space in the senior setup, they end up in other clubs. Few have managed to make a return to the parent team. Players like Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Ross Barkley are examples of players who successfully returned to their parent club.
Martin Odegaard was loaned out several times at Real Madrid before ending at Arsenal. For Folarin Balogun, a player eligible to play for Nigeria, Arsenal has not allowed the youngster to thrive in an elite environment and may seek opportunities elsewhere in January.
Folarin in January loan move
With game time at Arsenal senior team a rarity for Folarin Balogun, the striker is open to moving away from the Emirates. The American-born Nigerian who has played for England at the youth level wants a loan move away from Arsenal in January following a lack of playing opportunities.
Folarin Balogun, who is eligible to play for Nigeria, wants a temporary move away from the Emirates to garner enough experience to help him fight for a place at Arsenal. Last season, the 20-year-old was limited to the Carabao Cup and Europa League appearances. Mikel Arteta does not deem him ready for the senior team and thus has not featured him this season.
The quest for greener pastures is paramount to Folarin following his place in the team. With Arteta unconvinced of the player’s readiness for the big stage, he remains last in the pecking of strikers available to the Spanish coach. Folarin has Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette, and Eddie Nketiah ahead of him.
Folarin is currently stuck with youth football this season, and he wants to remedy the situation. He has been in unbelievable form this season. He has to his credit 16 goals and four assists in 12 matches.
Interest from the Championship
Folarin has attracted attention from several quarters, and should he follow through on his desire to leave the Emirates in January, he will not be short of suitors.
🚨 Arsenal have decided to let Folarin Balogun leave on loan in Jan until summer. Huge interest in 20yo striker but no decision yet on clubs. It could change but current thinking is to get regular senior action which #AFC can’t offer for now @TheAthleticUK https://t.co/YVOWS0iBSK
— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) December 6, 2021
According to The Athletic, several Championship sides have indicated an interest in his services. Middlesbrough, Millwall and Swansea are all ahead of the queue. French side Saint-Etienne is also interested in bringing him to France.
Balogun wants to brighten his chances of playing for either England or the Super Eagles of Nigeria in the future. He was born in America to Nigerian parents but moved to England as a toddler.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago