Reiss Nelson

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Internationals: Nelson scores twice in England win

Reiss Nelson celebrates for England

Reiss Nelson scored twice as England Under-19s came from behind to beat Hungary in Wednesday’s European Championship qualifier.

After conceding a first-half goal, the Young Lions bounced back in impressive fashion through Mason Mount before Nelson stole the show.
 
Our young forward raced onto a loose ball in the box before firing an unstoppable left-footed strike into the top corner to complete the turnaround.
 
Nelson was then in the right place at the right time to slam home from close range after Hungary had failed to clear an England set-piece, before Jadon Sancho added a fourth with just 10 minutes to go.
 
Eddie Nketiah and Joe Willock also started, and our trio could all be in action again on Saturday, when the Young Lions take on Latvia.

Elsewhere, Josh Dasilva played the full 90 minutes of England Under-20s’ 1-0 win over Poland in Bielsku-Bialej.

In the end it took a late strike from second-half substitute Keinan Davis to break the deadlock, with the Aston Villa youngster scoring his first Lions goal with just minutes left on the clock.

Interview

Nelson - How I went from Moonshot… to Arsenal

Reiss Nelson

He may only turn 18 in December, but Reiss Nelson has already come a long way.

 
The winger has gone from starring for our under-23s as a 14-year-old to making his first-team debut in just three seasons - but his footballing journey didn’t actually start with us.

“I was only nine years old and used to play for a team in Catford,” Nelson told the Arsenal Weekly podcast. “I would wake up every morning and get the train with my brother to travel to Catford three times a week to play there.
 
“I was there for about two months playing for a team called Moonshot and then I got scouted for Tottenham. I was at Tottenham for three or four weeks, and then a phonecall from Arsenal came and I went to Arsenal’s training ground. After the first session, they wanted to sign me so happy days. I didn’t look back.

“All the coaches at Arsenal have helped me a lot, even from my early days at Hale End as well. It was different to come from Hale End to London Colney. The culture at London Colney is so much different because we have a load of world-class first-team players around.
 
“Alex Iwobi has really helped me and is always making jokes to see if I’m OK. Lacazette is a nice guy as well, Ozil, Hector as well. All of the boys there are great and have really taken me in as a person and a footballer as well.

“I’m pushing to be a first-team player, so everything has come so fast and I’m very grateful. I want to push on, keep pushing and then hopefully I get a first-team spot in the next few years.
 
“I’ve spoken to the boss a lot and he’s said for this early stage it’s about development because I’m still young. I need to get to grips with defending and then hopefully when I’m older and more mature, I can move further up the field and show everyone what I’ve got.
 
“I’ve got to give my all, 100 per cent, and my family are really important in helping me do that. I’m always trying to better myself and improve, so it’s just adding the little things and the finishing touches.”

Interview

Nelson - I might go into MMA after football

Although only in the infancy of his football career, Reiss Nelson already has an eye on what he might like to do in later life.

The 17-year-old has burst into the first-team picture in recent weeks, impressing in both the Carabao Cup and Europa League.

Away from football, though, Nelson is an avid MMA fan and admires the sport’s biggest star Conor McGregor, who switched sports himself in August to fight Floyd Mayweather.

“I watched the McGregor fight,” said Nelson to the Arsenal Magazine. “And for the first couple of rounds I felt he was doing really well and he had Mayweather on the back foot, so I was confident that it would be a good fight and he might win, but then as the rounds went on he got pretty tired. 

“I knew that from his previous UFC fights that he may tire out, like he did against Nate Diaz, and that’s what happened. Mayweather had his way in the last couple of rounds.

“I was backing McGregor all the way. I’m a really big UFC fan. I think his aura and his personality are really great. I like to watch a lot of his documentaries and his vlog, and I think he’s just come up from nothing really. He was a plumber before he became a fighter, he’s worked really hard and his story is great.

“In some ways, I look up to him as a sportsman. His work rate and the effort he puts in is immense.

“I like Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone a lot too. He’s a very good fighter, very versatile and uses a lot of kicks in his style. I really like the flying knees and all of that, but no one really does that sort of thing anymore, people tend to grapple much more, but I love that style.

“MMA is something that I may want to get into after football. I spent some time over the summer doing a lot of kickboxing and I just felt that it was something I enjoyed doing a lot.”

Interview

Bellerin - My advice to ‘remarkable’ Nelson

If there is anyone who knows what it takes to succeed in a new position, it is Hector Bellerin.

When the Spain international joined us as a teenager in 2011 he was a winger but, since being converted into a full back, he has become one of the Premier League’s finest defenders.
 
Reiss Nelson has had to make a similar adjustment this season. Typically a tricky No 10 for our academy sides, the 17-year-old has featured at wing-back in the Europa League and Carabao Cup, and Bellerin has been impressed with what he has seen from him so far.
 
“Reiss is one of the players who, since they’ve stepped on to the first-team training pitch, has shown that there’s something quite different about him,” the 22-year-old told Arsenal Player.
 
“He’s got a great attitude, he’s got a great style of play and is someone who, when he goes to the under-23s now, he will go and score every single week. He’s someone who we’re really happy to have. When you compete against teams in the Europa League and you’re able to adapt from a No 10 role to a wing-back role, I think that’s remarkable at that age.

“He needs to keep his feet on the floor in the same way that he’s been doing up until now and, if he keeps going the way he’s going, I’m sure he will have a great career. It’s a great opportunity for him to be able to play in these competitions now and I think he’s taking his opportunities really well.
 
“When you come from an attacking role and you’re put in a position to defend, I think the most important thing to do is listen to the players around you, especially when he’s got the opportunity to play alongside people like Mathieu Debuchy who have played at the top level for a long time.
 
“It’s about listening to them, communicating with them and asking questions. For any player who changes position, I think that’s the most important thing. Then when he gets into those situations, is comfortable and can get at the other end of the pitch, just let it flow in the same way he does for the under-23s, and create chances like he does.”