Arsenal announced the signing of academy talent Jonathan Dinzeyi this week, securing the 20-year-old defender’s signature following his departure from north London rivals Tottenham.
Dinzeyi will initially be part of the Under-23 setup at Arsenal, although the club will hope that he continues his development and is able to make the step up and join an existing crop of home-grown youngsters in the first team within the next few seasons.
He's an Arsenal FanDespite joining the Gunners from Tottenham, where he had previously spent 12 years since the tender age of eight, Dinzeyi actually grew up an Arsenal fan and this transfer represents a move back towards his football roots - probably something he kept quiet at Spurs!
Dinzeyi has labelled Arsenal a ‘massive’ club, telling Arsenal.com: “They have a great history and with the new manager coming in who likes to play a lot of young players, I think it’s a great opportunity for me to show the fans and the coaching staff what I’m about.”
Why He Chose Arsenal
Aside from being an Arsenal fan, Dinzeyi chose the club because Steve Bould is in charge of the Under-23 squad and the youngster hopes he can learn from the Gunners legend.
“Knowing that Steve Bould is the head coach was a big factor for me. He’s a legend at the club and he’s played in my position, so I’m really hoping I can learn from him to develop my game,” Dinzeyi explained on his decision to sign for Arsenal.
Position & Style of Play
As already alluded to regarding his admiration of Bould, Dinzeyi is primarily a centre-back. He is a physical player who, by his own admission, is fond of tackling and heading, but the youngster is also a thoroughly modern defender in terms of being comfortable on the ball.
The majority of top sides work on retaining possession and building from the back, which is exactly how Dinzeyi has been moulded in his career so far.
“I’m a ball-playing centre half. I love to tackle and win headers and keeping clean sheets for me is vital,” he told Arsenal.com.
Signs of Ambition
Dinzeyi hasn’t joined Arsenal to settle with Under-23 level football and already has his eyes fixed firmly on earning a chance with the first-team. He knows that he first must prove himself at Under-23 level but is hoping to be involved at the higher level when it comes to cup games.
Right now, I just want to start as many games as possible with the under-23s and in the long run hopefully be involved in some cup fixtures with the first team,” the player has explained.
“Who knows what could happen after that? It’s just about proving myself with the under-23s right now and taking any opportunity that’s given to me.”
Dinzeyi can already see an established path to the first-team in the last couple of years. Bukayo Saka is the best example of an academy prospect who has become a regular starter for the senior side, but Eddie Nketiah, Joe Willock and Reiss Nelson are also firm parts of the first-team squad.
Saka, Nketiah, Willock and Nelson were all in the squad when Arsenal lifted the FA Cup this month.
Source : 90min