Super Eagles forward Alex Iwobi has revealed that Arsenal nearly sacked him during his spell with the club’s youth academy.
The 20-year-old who is now an established member of the Gunners first team arrived England at a tender age of seven and joined the Arsenal academy at nine.
He signed his first professional deal at 16 and made his debut against Sheffield Wednesday in October 2015 but unfortunately the North Londoner lost 3-0.
“I was almost released at 14, again at 16 and just about got a professional contract after that,” the 20-year-old forward told Standard Sport.
“Especially at 14, I thought I was very close to not making it. It was stressful as I was going through school, trying to balance that and make sure I was still signed for Arsenal. It was really difficult for me.
“We usually found out in December who might be kept on but I kept on getting the question ‘is he good enough?’ So they extended it to see if I could do something and it went to March and then April. Luckily I did enough.
“At 16, I got the option to leave but I always felt at home at Arsenal and that was where I wanted to be.
“At 16, there were a lot of good players, a few internationals in the team at a young age so it was difficult for me to stand out in the games. They always want the best and I wasn’t really up there at that age. The fact that I kept getting chances makes me feel lucky.”
Earlier today, Iwobi joined hundreds of football superstars to endorse Austin Jay Jay Okocha’s Foundation.