Joe Willock showed Mikel Arteta what he is missing by scoring and pulling the strings in Arsenal’s 4-1 victory over Molde on Thursday night.
Willock, 21, is yet to feature for the Gunners in the Premier League this season, with his only appearances coming in the Europa League and Carabao Cup.
But the England Under-21 ace has given Arteta a selection dilemma ahead of their clash with Wolves this weekend by producing an impressive display against Molde.
After Martin Ellingsen’s opener for the Norwegian outfit, Willock’s pressure resulted in Kristoffer Haugen turning the ball into his own net and levelling proceedings.
Sheriff Sinyan then deflected the Arsenal youngster’s cross into the back of his own net, before Nicolas Pepe added a third for Arteta’s side.
And with two minutes remaining, Willock got on the scoresheet himself to cap a superb performance at the Emirates.
Gunners legend Martin Keown has urged Arteta to “make use” of the midfielder, saying on BT Sport: “He’s just getting better and better.
“He really is now at a stage where he wants it. And he’s making the difference in these performances every time we see him.
“He wants to give and go. He’s got great technique and drive and that’s something they need to grab hold of and make use of in the first team.”
After a fine display in north London, Willock said: “First half they started really sharp and played really well.
“We had to stick with it. I thought we stuck to the game plan, didn’t get frustrated and we came out on top.”
When asked if he was disappointed not to make the squad for their 1-0 win away at Manchester United last weekend, Willock said: “To be honest with you, I’m just taking it game by game. It’s part of my journey. I’m a young kid and I’m trying to play well every time I get a chance. I need to learn from the disappointment of not being in the squad and then getting myself back up again to play tonight.
“I trust the manager and I trust he will give me the opportunity when I deserve it.”
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Arteta was impressed with his young star’s performance on the night, but has urged him to deliver on a consistent basis.
The Spaniard said: “He could have scored more. He got himself in goalscoring situations. He created a few goals as well. I think he had a really good performance.
“Keep doing what he’s doing consistently and his chance will arrive.”