‘What I learnt from my U-23s debut'

Emile Smith-Rowe earned himself a starting berth for the Arsenal Under-23s after a string of impressive performances for Kwame Ampadu's under-18s.

He played 63 minutes as a young side lost 5-0 to Everton, and here's what he had to say to ArsenalPlayer post-match: 

  • U-23s: Arsenal 0-5 Everton - Report

on making his under-23s debut...
It was a good experience to play in the under-23s but not the result we wanted, but it was still good to get my first appearance.

on the difference between under-23 and under-18 football...
It’s very different. The tempo is higher and it is much more physical. But I enjoyed it, it’s good to get games at this level.

on whether physicality made the difference...
I think we did have a young team, we didn’t play badly but we just didn’t do our jobs right to be honest. We could’ve got better and we could’ve scored goals but they’ve just done us on a few set-pieces and crosses.

on whether he thought he'd get called up to the under-23s...
I found out today. Some of the other younger lads went with the first team so I found out today, I was pleased with that but I’m not happy about this result.

on this being the next step in his development...
Yeah, I expect so. Obviously you can’t always win but you’ve always got to get better in the next game.

on what he and his team-mates can learn...
Do the same things and don’t change your game. Play as well as you can and try to adapt and it’s simple: I just need to play the best that I can for the 23s.

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