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Arsenal WONDERKID signs first professional contract

An Arsenal wonderkid has put an end to speculation about his future after signing his first professional contract with the Gunners.

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One of the most highly-rated young stars at Arsenal has ended speculation about his future by signing his first professional contract to commit his future to the club.

Ethan Nwaneri has developed a reputation as one of the brightest stars in Arsenal’s Hale End academy in recent years, having made his senior debut at just 15 years old, making him the Gunners’ youngest-ever debutant.

The now 17-year-old had been linked with moves to Chelsea and Manchester City, but his new contract offers certainty over his future, and Nwaneri insists it was an easy decision to make: “I didn’t have to think about it – this is my family and it feels like home here!”

He continued to show his joy, saying: “I’m delighted to have finally got to this stage after all the hard work over so many years. It’s a proud moment for me and my family to finally be here, so I’m happy and ready to keep working.

“It was the dream to get to this stage. I’ve always thought about when this day would come and I’ve been looking forward to it, so I’m happy it’s finally here.”

The England U17 international has contributed 17 goal involvements in 15 appearances across all competitions and age groups this season, including his second Premier League appearance.

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Former Arsenal defender, and current Arsenal academy manager, Per Mertesacker was full of praise for the youngster after he signed his first professional contract, saying: “We are extremely proud of Ethan and his journey, from pre-academy to Hale End, then a seamless transition to Sobha Realty Training Centre and then making his first team debut.

“Ethan’s journey now continues, and we will all be there alongside him to support his development. Ethan has a strong ability to master the ball, dominate possession and is really effective in the final third, which fits into our playing style at Arsenal Football Club.

“He is someone that will thrive on and off the pitch as a Strong Young Gunner and we look forward to working with him during his ongoing development in the years to come.”

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