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Is Omari Hutchinson: The Future of Arsenal Football Club?


Arsenal-related social media can sometimes be toxic, a horrible place where everyone complains of the latest results, management, recruitment and everything to pretty much complain about that is around North London.

However, a positive that all Arsenal fans who are active on social media can agree with is how exciting every compilation and highlight or even edit about players who are currently thriving in the renowned Hale End academy are.

One of these players is 17-year-old Omari Hutchinson who is currently one of the biggest threats in the Premier League 2 (which Arsenal’s U23 squad compete in). In 3 appearances so far he has two goals and assists to his name. The talented youngster is set for his best season ahead and is expected to breakthrough into the first team at some point this season. For my thoughts on three players who could break into the Arsenal squad this season, please read my latest article linked below:

Hutchinson was promoted to the U23 side by Per Mertesacker ahead of the 21/22 campaign after a superb season in the U18 PL where he scored and assisted seven in twenty appearances, which surprisingly only saw them finish fourth in the South Division, but managing to finish above rivals Spurs and Chelsea. Omari faces a more difficult challenge ahead with the task to carry the Arsenal U23 squad who struggled last season finishing tenth with only thirteen teams in the league. They only picked up six wins and lost ten. 

However, the U23 side has a new fresh look with Arthur Okonkwo replacing Tom Smith behind the sticks, Omar Rekik coming in at centre-back after joining this summer and the highly-rated Charlie Patino and Kido Taylor-Hart being promoted with Omari from the U18 side. They have beat Manchester United and Spurs so far in their quest for glory. 

But it’s not all about his involvement in the U23 side. Omari was brought with to Scotland in the only preseason tour this year to train with the first-team squad. Although he didn’t properly feature, Hutchinson should make his awaited debut sometime this season or in the next albeit that he continues his amazing individual performances for Mertesacker’s side for the duration of the season. 

Omari plays as a central attacking midfielder but tends to drift wide to the right, similar to what Emile Smith Rowe does but in the opposite direction. It is so effective for the U23s because they have the option to play a 442 with two attacking midfielders or switch to a 433 depending on the circumstances. Kido Taylor Hart plays as an attacking midfielder who drifts to the left and they compliment each other perfectly as seen in the 2-1 victory over the Tottenham Hotspur U23 team in late August. 

But it’s another game where Omari caught many Arsenal fans’ eyes. And that was against Crystal Palace in the second game of the PL2 campaign. Hutchinson bagged a brace in under 15 minutes before Mika Biereth scored emphatically and Zak Swanson added more misery from right-wing back in the 98th minute. Omari’s first goal was nothing short of magnificent. 

To add some context to the wonder goal, Arsenal had just been thrashed 6-1 in their first game of the season away to West Ham. Per opted for a 352 again but decided to bring Omari into the midfield and bring Kido up to replace Ben Cottrell who struggled with the fast tempo. The 17-year-old picked up the ball on the edge of the circle in his half, turned two Palace defenders with a shoulder feint and held them off until he reached the edge of the Palace box. With one hesitation to the left, he threw off his final marker and slotted the ball into the bottom right corner, completely dumbfounding the goalkeeper. 

It did its rounds on social media with Gooners even urging Mikel Arteta to pond on whether he should promote the likes of Charlie, Omari and Kido to the first team for the cup tie coming up next Wednesday against AFC Wimbledon and even last Saturday against Norwich. 

To conclude, it shouldn’t be too long before the new crop of players makes their breakthrough. Should it come as early as next Wednesday, I don’t think so although it would be a great opportunity should it arise. Most of the talk right now is on Charlie Patino as it should be, but Omari Hutchinson- remember the name. 


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