The new Walcott? Teenager Smith Rowe continues Arsenal hot streak

The 18-year-old midfielder was on the scoresheet once again in the Gunners’ Europa League tie with Vorskla Poltava in Kiev

Arsenal starlet Emile Smith Rowe has become the first player aged 18 or below to score more than one goal for the club in a single European campaign since Theo Walcott over a decade ago.

The England youth international netted his latest goal for the Gunners after just 10 minutes of their clash with Ukrainian outfit Vorskla Poltava.

The goal came when the Vorskla defence could only clear as far as Smith Rowe after Eddie Nketiah had bundled his way into the box, leaving the midfielder with an easy finish.

Former Arsenal forward Walcott, who’s now with Everton, managed two goals as an 18-year-old in the club’s 2007-08 Champions League campaign, with both strikes coming against Slavia Prague in the group stages.

Smith Rowe has now scored twice in the Europa League for Arsenal, with his previous strike coming against Qarabag last month. 

He might have made that three against Vorskla had his second half effort not have been harshly ruled out for offside.

The youngster has managed three goals in his last four appearances for the club and continues to impress having been given a number of first team opportunities by Emery this season.

The Arsenal boss blooded a number of other young players in Kiev on Thursday, with both Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Joe Willock starting as well as Smith Rowe and Nketiah.

Midfielder Willock also got on the scoresheet in the first half with his first ever senior strike.

But it is Smith Rowe that has been a regular for the Gunners in Europe this season after impressing Emery with his performances in pre-season.

The versatile midfielder signed a new contract with Arsenal in July and his progress is understood to be a big reason why the club are open to letting Aaron Ramsey leave when his contract expires at the end of the season.

This was his sixth appearance of the season so far and the London-born midfielder will be hoping that his good form will eventually see him get a chance in the Premier League.

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