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Akpom - It’s so important to stay humble

Chuba Akpom

Chuba Akpom has stressed the importance of staying grounded after his goalscoring exploits on the Asia Tour.

The 17-year-old striker caught the eye with a series of fine performances in the Far East, scoring four times in four appearances.

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Vietnam (a) - Bitesize

 It came on the back of a fine season last term and, while Akpom is pleased to be making such rapid strides, he insists he will not get carried away.

“Last year I did well - I played for the reserves and scored 21 goals in all,” Akpom told Arsenal.com. “That was my first year in full-time professional football so it was a good year for me.

“I think it's important to keep progressing and to do better than last season. Now I've toured with the first team hopefully I can play a few games, or be in and around the first team this coming season.

“If not then I want to get some first-team experience, out on loan maybe. Basically I just want to improve on last year, to work on what needs developing. I want to get the best out of myself, but what I really want to do is play for the Arsenal first team.

“The coaches always tell me to work hard on all areas of my game but most importantly to stay humble. They say that a lot - ‘don't get big headed’ - and I know that the harder you work, the better chance you have.”

"I just want to improve on last year, to work on what needs developing. I want to get the best out of myself, but what I really want to do is play for the Arsenal first team"

Akpom is used to causing a stir and has made an instant impact since his promotion to the England Under-19s last season.

“It’s been good playing alongside people like Raheem Sterling,” he said. “We didn't qualify for the Euros unfortunately - we got two draws and a win but it wasn't enough.

“I've been playing for England since I was 15 so it's all a good experience. I have scored a few goals for them too! I think I was top scorer for the under-19s, but I don't think too much about that. I just want to do better in the next match.

“I think I'm the youngest in the squad so when I go there I always get a lot of banter with them all calling me ‘the kid’! I love that though, it's funny. To gel with your team you need to have a good relationship off the pitch as well.”

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