Manager Mikel Arteta has since revealed that the Gunners youngster asked for the number himself, giving an insight into the kind of confidence and faith the midfielder has in his own ability to take on such responsibility.
The Gunners boss explained: “He asked for (the No 10 shirt), so that shows you the ambition and desire.
“I prefer players who ask for more than maybe they can take but if they believe they can do it, don’t put a limit on it.
“When he asked me and asked the club that he would like to get that (number), OK, let’s go.”
Arteta went on to reveal that the duo discussed the decision at great length, giving the 20-year-old his vote of confidence ahead of the new season.
“We talked a little bit, we discussed it and he knows the consequences of that, but he feels prepared to do it and if he is prepared to do it, then I am going to be right behind him to try to make him as comfortable and as happy as possible to do what he wants to do.”
Do you think Arteta giving Smith Rowe the number 10 shirt was right?
This article was most recently revised and updated 1 year ago