Ox - My memories of playing the academy

Nowadays, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is an established first-team player at Arsenal.

But rewind back to his youth, and the Ox actually used to dread matches against his current club when he was playing for Southampton’s academy.

“We used to turn up and they’d all be about 6ft at the age of 10,” he told Arsenal Player. “Chuks Aneke used to bully me on the pitch, the same with Nico Yennaris, and Benik Afobe used to score about 20 goals a game. It was horrible!


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“We lost 12-1 when we were under-9s, 10-0 when we were under-10s, and then my dad was the coach for under-11s. We thought we’d cracked the code, didn’t we? We went 2-0 up and thought we’d cracked it but then we lost 12-2.

“It was the same until under-14s, when we won our first game 3-2 away at Hale End. We gained some respect then.”

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