Arsenal manager Unai Emery was full of praise for Alex Iwobi following the 1-2 win away at Huddersfield Town on Saturday, especially his work-ethic and attitude.
Iwobi broke the deadlock in the 16th minute, doing well to control a difficult volley to capitalize on a cross from the left by Sead Kolašinac but also with a dose of luck as the shot caught Huddersfield defender Terence Kongolo, changed direction and caught goalkeeper Ben Hamer on the wrong foot as it hit the back of the net. Alexandre Lacazette finished off a great team effort and doubled the lead just before half-time, meaning that the late clumsy goal by Kolašinac was of little consequence.
Iwobi has now scored three Premier League goals this season, the same number as in the whole of 2017/18 having started seven games less. He was on particularly good form early in the campaign as he seemed to have adapted well to the demands of the new manager, but that form hit a few rough patches along the way since then.
However, Emery also highlighted the areas in which the Nigerian still has room for improvement, and what he says can hardly be disputed. It is end-product which the manager wants the forward to improve. He needs to achieve a greater level of tactical awareness, and to gain a bit of composure when in possession the final third, which should help him choose his options more carefully – to shoot, to dribble, or to pass.
Iwobi has been Arsenal’s first-team player for a relatively long time now almost four years, and it’s very easy to forget that he is still only 22, and not choosing the right option in every moment comes with the territory for a player so young at such a high level. There is very little doubt that he will develop in the right direction with time.