Pre-Match Report

U-21s: Coventry v Arsenal - The Brief

Smith Rowe

A side of Arsenal players aged 21 and under will travel to the Ricoh Arena on Wednesday night to face Coventry City in our first match in the Checkatrade Trophy.

THE STORY SO FAR

We come into this fixture in fine form at under-23 level, having picked up six points from our last two Premier League 2 outings.

A brace from Eddie Nketiah helped us to beat West Ham United 3-2 at the London Stadium, before goals from Joe Willock and Tyreece John-Jules ensured a 2-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium.

Eddie Nketiah

We’re currently unbeaten in our last three outings - and we’ve averaged a return of 2.75 goals per game.

THE OPPOSITION

Coventry City beat Oxford United 2-1 in League One on Sunday, but they’ve picked up just one other win from their opening eight fixtures.

They’ve conceded nine goals over the course of the season so far, and have averaged a return of just 0.5 goals per game, having failed to score in four fixtures.

They’re yet to truly impose themselves in the final third since gaining promotion from League Two last season, but the physical presence of Amadou Bakayoko could prove to be a real test for us on Wednesday. 

The 22-year-old forward stands at 6ft 3in and joined the club from fellow League One outfit Walsall in August 2018. He managed to score on his home debut for the Sky Blues, but it’s his ability to hold the ball up, turn defenders and bring others into play that makes him such a threat.

ONE TO WATCH

With Reiss Nelson heading out on loan to Hoffenheim in the Bundesliga, Xavier Amaechi has a golden opportunity to step up this season - and could make a name for himself in this competition.

Xavier Amaechi

The skilful winger has kicked off the season in exciting form, having scored one goal and claimed three assists from just four appearances.

He’s got quick feet, has an eye for a pass and he’s never afraid in one-on-one situations. We’ll need the 17-year-old to see plenty of the ball in the final third if we want to break down Coventry’s defence on Wednesday.

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