Wenger wants more from Akpom

Akpom made a handful of appearances for the Gunners last season, before ending the campaign on loan at Nottingham Forest.

The England youth international caught the eye during Wednesday's pre-season tour opener, putting Arsenal in front on 30 minutes.

Midfielder Jack Wilshere scored a penalty on the hour, before Akpom also netted from the spot on 76 minutes then quickly completed his treble with a powerful header.

"It is down to performance and attitude

He has that grade to make between being a big talent and after an efficient talent week in, week out

That's of course the target," Wenger said, quoted on the club's official website, www.arsenal.com.

"That's up to him (on his role for the new season)

How much (will he play)? I don't know, but I just believe that it's an encouragement to do well and to work even harder.

"He is a young player and it can lift his confidence

The confidence in the dressing room that you sense from the other players is important as well and that can help him

Let's not forget it's a friendly

He's a good talent, but he has to work and show that in [the big] games."

"I sent him out on loan last year because I thought he needed that

This pre-season, during the season I plan to keep him with us."

Wilshere is another looking to get some much-needed game time following last season's injury problems, and was deployed in the number 10 role

Wenger said: " He always had appetite Jack, but he was out for a long time

Already in the last two or three games of the season he has found his burst back with acceleration

"He was injured last year early in the season and he missed five months

What you want at the top level today demands so much physically that to be [out] is a nightmare for the players

That's what he needs - continuity

After, we play so many games

"We have a big squad, but not a massive one and I think the opportunities will be there for everybody."

Wenger had rested 10 of his 27-man squad, including summer signing Petr Cech, while captain Mikel Arteta also watched on from the stands

The Arsenal manager was happy enough with the performance

"Overall it was a positive game because we had a good resistance in the first game

We were tested against a very resilient, very dynamic, very mobile team, with a good collective attitude," Wenger said

"I liked the fact that we kept a good team focus and as well that individually, every player had to dig deep

We suffered a little bit to get a good workout."

Arsenal will face Everton in the final on Saturday after the Toffees defeated Stoke 5-4 on penalties earlier in the day after their game had ended goalless

Wenger said: "I will rotate a bit because the week after we play two games again

"For me at the moment the [objective is] to give competition to the players without overloading them and [for them] to be capable to work hard in training and to work on their fitness

If they play too many games, you cannot work in training."

Source : PA

Source: PA