Arsenal Under-21s play their second Emirates Stadium game of the season on Monday when they take on Wolves.
The young Gunners go into the game unbeaten in the league this year having taken eight points from four games, including a 1-0 win over West Brom on their last outing in N5.
Steve Gatting’s under-19s, which contains the vast majority of the under-21 side, have also got off to a flying start in the Uefa Youth League after back-to-back 4-1 wins over Marseille and Napoli.
Austin Lipman was the star of the show against Napoli last Wednesday, scoring two goals in as many minutes early on in the second half. Lipman also won the first penalty of the night, which Chuba Akpom converted before missing another one midway through the second period.
"I told the coach at the end of last season that I thought it was my best position and it’s where he'll get the best out of me"
The 18-year-old Lipman excelled in the No 10 role that night, providing a constant threat by finding pockets of space between the Napoli defence and midfield. Lipman has struggled to hold down a starting place so far this season but thinks his performance against the Italian side could earn him more regular starts.
“I was unbelievably pleased with the whole night,” Lipman told Arsenal.com.
“It was a tough game and they started well. They came at us but I thought we held out really well in the first half. Towards the end they got a bit tired and we capitalised on their tiredness to score a few really good goals.”
Lipman was glad to get on the scoresheet and his second effort was without doubt the pick of Arsenal’s four goals.
“The second goal was nice, to see the ball fly into the corner. But the ball just fell to me, I think Chuba Akpom mis-controlled the ball and luckily I was there to capitalise.
“For the first one I just ran into a space and Hector Bellerin found me, I didn't feel a defender up my back so I turned and managed to find the bottom corner.
“I love playing in the No 10 role,” Lipman added. “I told the coach at the end of last season that I thought it was my best position and it’s where he'll get the best out of me. I think I proved that with my display on Wednesday.”
Wolves have also begun their campaign in impressive style. Gareth Prosser’s team registered victories against Stoke and Middlesbrough before thrashing Reading 4-0 last time out. They currently lie seventh in the under-21 league table, four places above their hosts.
But Lipman believes the confidence and feel-good factor around the Arsenal squad makes the Gunners a difficult team to stop at the moment.
“The changing room is buzzing at the moment because we are playing really well and we are enjoying it," he said. "We are training hard but we are very level-headed and we go into every game as if it's our last, but we are very happy with the way things are going at the moment.”
We will have live tweets from the under-21s' game on the @ArsenalLive account from 6.55pm (UK time).
Tickets for Monday's game can be bought on the door, priced at £4 for adults and £2 concessions, right up until kick-off. More details here.
Copyright 2023 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.