Arsenal fans have high hopes for home grown striker Eddie Nketiah, with that optimism for a very bright future significantly fuelled on Tuesday night when the 20-year-old starlet netted a hat-trick while in action for England’s Under-21 team.
The junior lions were facing their Austrian equivalents in a European Championship qualifier in Milton Keynes and Nketiah helped England race into a 4-0 half-time lead after netting twice in the opening 45 minutes – Chelsea teenager Callum Hudson-Odoi got the other two.
FT: England 5-1 Austria— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) October 15, 2019
12' ⚽️ Hudson-Odoi
28' ⚽️ Nketiah
39' ⚽️ Nketiah
45' ⚽️ Hudson-Odoi
79' ⚽️ Nketiah
A five-star performance from England's youngsters! pic.twitter.com/PN4RNtQrud
Austria at least pulled one back shortly after the hour mark, but Nketiah went on to complete his hat-trick with a little over 10 minutes remaining as England won 5-1.
The close-range finish with his left foot rounded off a ‘perfect’ treble for the Gunners talent, having earlier swung his right leg at an effort and placed a header into the bottom corner.
Nketiah’s perfect hat-trick vs Austria U21 propels him into the all-time top 10 England U21 goal scorers.— Cannon Insider (@CannonInsider) October 16, 2019
Eddie now has 8 goals in 8 appearances for the #YoungLions. He is 5 goals short of joint-top scorers Alan Shearer and Francis Jeffers.#AFC #LUFC #ENGU21 pic.twitter.com/spTmK3MFOs
It could even have been four for Nketiah, who saw an effort from the penalty spot in the closing stages saved by Austria goalkeeper Fabian Ehmann.
“I am on penalty duty, I usually put them away but the goalkeeper made a good save,” Nketiah reflected to BT Sport after the final whistle. “I am delighted with the hat-trick and get to keep the match ball. Hopefully there will be more to come for England.”
missed the pen because he felt sorry for them— Luka (@VintageLaca) October 15, 2019
If you need a goal just call Eddie— I❤️🇬🇭& 🇳🇬 (@BamfiAkyeampong) October 15, 2019
This guy Ian Wright 2.0— leonredafc (@leonred14) October 15, 2019
Nketiah scored a perfect hat-trick tonight, one with his right foot, one with his left foot, one with his head. https://t.co/QNVn4IzbQE— Dan Critchlow (@afcDW) October 15, 2019
Pelé watches clips of Nketiah every night before he goes to bed— Shafka Gunner (@Shafka_Gunner) October 15, 2019
Nketiah, who has scored three times for Arsenal in his 19 senior appearances, joined Leeds on loan during the summer. But despite starting and scoring in the Carabao Cup, he has struggled for game time in the Championship, with all his appearances so far coming off the bench.
That being said, he has still made a key impact for Marcelo Bielsa’s team, netting a late winner against Brentford in August and then getting a goal and assist in a 2-0 win over Barnsley in September in what was only a 20-minute cameo.
Whether he will now get a chance in the starting line-up after boosting his confidence in such clinical fashion on international duty, only Marcelo Bielsa can decide.
Source : 90min