Arsenal were among the first tier of English clubs to gain Academy status, just before the 1998/99 season, and the Academy has produced a steady stream of talent every year since.

There are well over 50 Arsenal Academy graduates now playing professional football at league level, and below we take a look their progress. The list is in order of the players' ages, and we have only included players who appeared in Academy football from the 1998/99 season onwards, therefore some notable names such as Paolo Vernazza (now with Barnet) are not included.

There are also many other products of the Gunners Academy playing for various sides at non-league level, such as Hassan Sulaiman, Alfie Kamara and Nerada Bernard to name just three, that are not listed here. Neither are former schoolboys like Shabazz Baidoo (now at QPR).

We have though, listed current Arsenal first-team players who are either recent Academy graduates or are still in the Academy fold. Many of the players below were part of the FA Youth Cup winning sides of 2000 and 2001, or the Under-17s and Under-19s Academy League championship-winning teams of 1999/2000 and 2000/01 respectively.

Julian Gray - Midfielder
Born: 21/9/79
Silky skilled left-winger from Lewisham, Julian has carved out a successful career for himself at Birmingham City. He left Arsenal for Crystal Palace in July 2000 and became a regular at Selhurst Park. Joined Birmingham in 2004 after a brief loan spell at Cardiff City.

Tommy Black - Midfielder
Born: 26/11/79
All action wide-midfielder who can also play up front. Played for Carlisle and Bristol City before joining Crystal Palace where he has played over 100 games. Spent time on loan at Sheffield United last season.

Greg Lincoln - Midfielder
Born: 23/3/80
Cultured midfielder whose promising Arsenal career was continually blighted by injury. Left Highbury and played for Stevenage and Margate before helping Hammerby to their first ever Swedish League Championship. Most recently played for Northampton Town.

David Grondin - Defender
Born: 8/5/80
Young French full-back who arrived from St Etienne and played for the Gunners in the Champions League. Went on loan to Cannes before transferring to Dunfermline in the Scottish Premier League. At the beginning of last season he signed for current club Excelsior Mouscron in Belgium, for whom he was a regular last term.

David Livermore - Midfielder
Born: 20/5/80
Feisty midfielder who left Highbury for Millwall in September 1999. The 25 year-old has made a real impression at The New Den and has more than 250 appearances to his name.

Guillaume Norbert - Defender
Born: 14/10/80
French defender Guillaume left Arsenal for French Division Two side Lorient in 2001. He then signed for Creteil, where he made 24 appearances, then Angers, where he played 21 times. In January 2005 he joined top flight side Nantes.

Rhys Weston - Defender
Born: 27/10/80
Welsh International Rhys played one Premiership match for Arsenal against Newcastle before moving to Cardiff City in 2000 and he has now played more than 200 matches for Dave Jones' team, including at Highbury in the FA Cup this season.

James Harper - Midfielder
Born: 9/11/80
A regular in Arsenal's Reserves under Geordie Armstrong, James is now a first-team regular for Reading following his move there in February 2001. The indefatigable central midfielder previously had a spell on loan at Cardiff.

Stuart Taylor - Goalkeeper
Born: 28/11/80
Won a championship medal with Arsenal in 2002, and played for Bristol Rovers, Crystal Palace, Peterborough and Leicester City on loan while on Arsenal's books. Signed permanently for Aston Villa in summer 2005.

Ashley Cole - Defender
Born: 20/12/80
Enjoyed a loan spell with Crystal Palace in his early days at Highbury. Now a regular for club and country, he became the first former Academy player to grace the World Cup Finals in 2002. More than 200 first-team appearances for Arsenal.

Lee Canoville - Defender
Born: 14/3/81
Versatile England youth International who moved to Torquay United in September 2001. Made more than 100 appearances at Plainmoor before signing for League Two outfit Boston United at the beginning of the season, for whom he is a regular.

Graham Stack - Goalkeeper
Born: 26/9/81
Graham made his loan move to Reading permanent in January. Last season he played 30 times for Millwall, including in the UEFA Cup. He made five first-team appearances for the Gunners, and also enjoyed a fruitful loan spell in Belgium First Division with Beveren.

Graham Barrett - Forward
Born: 6/10/81
Full Irish International who made his first-team debut for Arsenal in the Premiership as an 18 year-old. Loaned to Bristol Rovers, Crewe, Colchester and Brighton whilst a Gunner, he moved to Coventry permanently in 2003, and was loaned to Scottish Premier League side Livingston in early 2005/06.

Liam Chilvers - Defender
Born: 6/11/81
Liam is an integral part of the Colchester United team, after making his loan deal permanent in 2004. Previously loaned to Northampton, Notts County and Beveren, the powerful centre-half has played more than 100 games for the Layer Road club.

Jo Osei-Kuffour - Forward
Born: 17/11/81
Jo was a great goal poacher for the Academy and the north Londoner has shown his ability to play professionally at Torquay. He has scored more than 20 goals for them since signing in October 2002. Prior to joining The Gulls he played on loan at Swindon Town.

David Noble - Midfielder
Born: 2/2/82
A skilful central midfielder, David enjoyed a loan spell with Watford before signing for West Ham United in January 2003. A year later he moved onto Boston United, and he signed permanently for Bristol City this month.

John Halls - Defender
Born: 14/2/82
John recently signed for Reading from Stoke City, where he was a key member of the side since joining permanently in December 2003. The defender made three substitute appearances for Arsenal before playing for Colchester and Belgian side Beveren on loan.

Jay Bothroyd - Forward
Born: 5/5/82
Talented Islington lad Jay signed for Charlton at the beginning of the season, having previously played for Coventry, Perugia in Italy's Serie A, and Blackburn Rovers.

Ben Chorley - Defender
Born: 30/9/82
Powerful centre-half with great leadership qualities, captaining the 2001 FA Youth Cup win. Ben joined MK Dons (then Wimbledon) after a loan spell with Brentford and has racked up more than 100 appearances for them.

Steven Sidwell - Midfielder
Born: 14/12/82
Regarded as one of the outstanding talents in the Championship, Steven has been a consistent performer in the heart of the Reading midfield since he signed for them in January 2003. Whilst at Arsenal Stephen enjoyed fruitful loan spells at Brentford, Beveren and Brighton.

Rohan Ricketts - Midfielder
Born: 22/12/82
Rohan made the move across north London to join Tottenham in 2002 after making one League Cup appearance for Arsenal. The midfielder made 30 league appearances for Spurs, before going on loan to Coventry, then signing permanently for Wolves, where he is currently a first team regular.

Jermaine Pennant - Midfielder
Born: 15/1/83
Became the youngest ever Arsenal player when he appeared against Middlesbrough in 1999, Jermaine has since signed for Birmingham City. The England Under-21 International scored a hat-trick on his first Premiership start for Arsenal. Previously had loan spells with Watford and Leeds.

Sebastian Svard - Midfielder
Born: 15/1/83
Seb joined Portuguese side Vitoria Guimaraes in the summer. The Danish youth International had previously enjoyed loans at Brondby, Stoke City and boyhood club FC Copenhagen. He made four first-team appearances while at Arsenal.

Moritz Volz - Defender
Born: 21/1/83
The former German Youth International is now a regular for Fulham. The right-back joined Arsenal as a scholar in 1999 and made his Gunners debut in the Worthington Cup in November 2000. He signed for Fulham in January 2004 following a successful loan spell.

Jerome Thomas - Midfielder
Born: 23/3/83
Double FA Youth Cup winner Jerome is now impressing at Charlton Athletic. He played three times for the Arsenal first-team and also enjoyed a successful loan spell at QPR.

Jeremie Aliadiere - Forward
Born: 30/3/83
Jeremie has won a championship medal and two Community Shield medals at Arsenal, and signed a new long-term contract with the Gunners in the summer. He will spend this year on loan at West Ham United, after a brief spell at Celtic.

Olafur-Ingi Skulason - Defender
Born: 1/3/83
Olafur-Ingi made one appearance for Arsenal, against Wolves in 2003. In June he signed for Brentford, and played two league games before suffering a serious knee injury.

John Spicer - Midfielder
Born: 13/9/83
John Spicer is currently an integral part of the Burnley midfield, having played for Bournemouth the season before. The former England youth International made one Gunners first-team appearance, in the Carling Cup against Rotherham.

Alex Bailey - Defender
Born: 21/9/83
Right-back Alex has been a regular for Chesterfield since signing in summer 2004 and has made more than 50 appearances for the League One side. Won the Under-19 Academy League title while at Arsenal.

Ryan Garry - Defender
Born: 29/9/83
Ryan has been severely hampered by injury his whole career. He is still on Arsenal's books though, and has made two first-team appearances.

Nicky Nicolau - Defender
Born: 12/10/83
Dependable left-back Nicky signed for Southend after leaving Arsenal, and made more than 30 appearances for the Shrimps, including the successful League Two play-off match at the Millennium Stadium in 2005. Now playing for Swindon in League One.

Daniel Karbassiyoon - Defender
Born: 10/8/84
Versatile American youngster Daniel is currently at Burnley. He scored on his Arsenal debut last season, in the Carling Cup win at Manchester City, and then joined Ipswich Town on loan, where he played six games. He signed for Burnley in the summer.

David Bentley - Forward
Born: 27/8/84
David is spending the year on loan at Blackburn Rovers, having spent the previous season on loan at Norwich City. The England Under-21 International has made nine first-team appearances for Arsenal, scoring one goal.

Frankie Simek - Defender
Born: 13/10/84
American defender Frankie signed permanently for Championship side Sheffield Wednesday in the summer, and he's been a regular for them this season. He made his Arsenal debut in 2003 against Wolves in the League Cup, and last season was loaned to QPR and Bournemouth.

Stephen Bradley - Midfielder
Born: 19/11/84
Talented midfielder Stephen is currently with Irish side Drogheda, but was recently offered trial with Fulham. He made a couple of first-team appearances for Dunfermline in the Scottish top flight after leaving Arsenal in 2004.

Justin Hoyte - Defender
Born: 20/11/84
Justin, a pacy full-back, made 12 appearances for the Arsenal first-team last season. He joined Sunderland on a one-year loan deal at the beginning of the season, and has been virtually ever-present for Mick McCarthy's side.

Adam Birchall - Forward
Born: 2/12/84
Adam was loaned out to Wycombe Wanderers last season, and scored four goals from 11 starts. He was transferred to Mansfield at the beginning of this season, and scored on his debut for the League Two side. He has remained a regular in the line-up.

Dean Shiels - Forward
Born: 1/2/85
Dean has been a regular striker for Scottish Premier League outfit Hibernian since signing for them at the beginning of 2004/05. He scored six league goals for them last season and featured in the UEFA Cup this term.

Sebastian Larsson - Midfielder
Born: 6/6/85
Swedish Under-21 International Sebastian played three times for Arsenal in the Carling Cup last season and has made a further four first-team appearances this term, including starting against Ajax in the Champions League.

Sam Oji - Defender
Born: 9/10/85
Sam left Arsenal in 2004, before playing a first-team game for the Club, and signed for Birmingham City. He is now on loan to League One side Doncaster Rovers, and came on as a late substitute in the recent Carling Cup Quarter-Final against Arsenal.

Neil Kilkenny - Midfielder
Born: 19/12/85
Neil signed for Birmingham City in January 2004, who then loaned him to Oldham Athletic. Last season he played 27 league games in the Addicks' midfield, scoring four goals. This season he has broken into the Birmingham first team, and has made more than a dozen outings.

Stephen O'Donnell - Midfielder
Born: 15/1/86
Stephen moved north of the border to Scottish Premier side Falkirk after being released in the summer, and is a regular in their midfield. He scored both goals in the League Cup win over Partick back in August.

Dean McDonald - Midfielder
Born: 19/2/86
Dean joined Ipswich Town on a permanent basis last June. He spent a month on loan to Hartlepool earlier this season, scoring once in six games.

Patrick Cregg - Midfielder
Born: 21/2/86
Patrick played two Carling Cup games last season for Arsenal, and this season he was a late substitute in the Carling Cup win at Sunderland. He signed for Scottish Premier League side Falkirk earlier this month and made his debut in the Scottish Cup win over Brechin.

Quincy Owusu-Abeyie - Forward
Born: 15/4/86
Dutch starlet Quincy has made 23 first-team appearances for Arsenal, scoring twice, and has played in all four competitions this season.

Chris Wright - Goalkeeper
Born: 27/9/86
Chris Wright left the Club in June 2005 for Boston United. He has played twice for the League Two side, one each in the League and the FA Cup.

Ryan Smith - Midfielder
Born: 10/11/86
The flying winger is on loan to Championship side Leicester City, where he has been a regular starter, including in the FA Cup Third Round win over Tottenham. The Islington-born youngster has made six Arsenal first team appearances - all in the Carling Cup.

Johan Djourou - Defender
Born: 18/1/87
Johan has made eight first-team appearances for Arsenal, including all 90 minutes of the 7-0 win over Middlesbrough recently. He is a Swiss youth International.

Matthew Hislop - Defender
Born: 31/1/87
Matthew joined QPR in March last year, and made his League Championship debut for Rangers in the 2-1 win over Leicester earlier this season.

Kerrea Gilbert - Defender
Born: 28/2/87
Kerrea has broken into the first-team this season, and has played five times for the Gunners, including in the Champions League and FA Cup. He joined the Club as a scholar in summer 2003.

Cesc Fabregas - Midfielder
Born: 4/5/87
Cesc broke Jermaine Pennant's record as the Club's youngest ever player when he started against Rotherham aged 16 years and 177 days. The boy from Barcelona went into the Academy when he first signed, and played (and scored) in the FA Youth Cup two seasons ago.

Arturo Lupoli - Forward
Born: 24/6/87
Arturo, a prolific striker at reserve level, has played seven Carling Cup games for the Gunners, and one FA Cup match. He has netted three goals so far for the first-team.

Ben Gill - Midfielder
Born: 4/10/87
A scholar at Arsenal in 2004/05, Ben signed for Watford at the beginning of the season and has played three times for the Hornets, twice in the Carling Cup and once in the FA Cup.

Dominic Shimmin - Defender
Born: 13/10/87
Dominic moved to QPR after being released from Arsenal late last season and has made three first-team appearances this season, two in the league and one in the Carling Cup.

Nicklas Bendtner - Forward
Born: 16/1/88
Danish striker Nicklas has appeared in three Carling Cup matches this season. The tall forward joined from FC Copenhagen in summer 2004, and made his debut against Sunderland this season.

Fabrice Muamba - Midfielder
Born: 6/4/88
Fabrice has started two Carling Cup games this season, playing the full 90 minutes on both occasions. The hard working midfielder was born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, but has represented England at youth level.

Anthony Stokes - Forward
Born: 25/7/88
Stokes made his first-team debut in October as a late substitute in the 3-0 Carling Cup win at Sunderland. The Irish youth International joined the Arsenal Academy in summer of 2004.

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 24 Jan 2006