Arsenal youngster Reiss Nelson opens up on relationship with Van Persie



Arsenal has historically been unafraid to put faith in talented youngsters that show exceptional promise through their developmental period, and that trend has continued under current boss Mikel Arteta in the wake of Unai Emery’s tenure as both Spanish bosses sought to highlight the futures of the likes of Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe. But one player that has yet to truly get his chance in north London is Reiss Nelson.

Long considered to be one of the best talents to ever emerge from the Arsenal academy pipeline, Nelson struggled to make the same gains under both Emery and Arteta as his former England youth international counterparts Saka and Smith Rowe, which led some to believe that he could be permanently out the door in the near future.

Arsenal’s Reiss Nelson opens up on connection with former Gunners striker Robin van Persie

LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 03: Reiss Nelson of Arsenal during the UEFA Europa League Group B stage match between Arsenal FC and Rapid Wien at Emirates Stadium on December 03, 2020 in London, England. A limited number of fans are welcomed back to stadiums to watch elite football across England. This was following easing of restrictions on spectators in tiers one and two areas only (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

Currently on loan with Dutch giants Feyenoord Rotterdam, Nelson has begun to find his way under manager Arne Slot in one of the historic hotbeds for player development in the world, and while in the port city, Nelson has linked up with former Arsenal star Robin van Persie in a bid to find any progress in his game that may have previously eluded him in the past.

When speaking with the Athletic and cited by the Mirror, Nelson opened up on his interactions with the former Netherlands star forward and the aid that RVP has given him during his stint in the Eredivisie.

“Yeah, I speak with him. Sometimes he comes over on a Wednesday, before Europa Conference League games on a Thursday. I ask him about what positions I need to be getting in. Certain movements I need to be doing, certain finishes.”

Nelson also reflected on his developmental stagnation at Arsenal after doing so well at youth level, and has looked in the mirror to find ways he could improve the way he approaches the current period of his progression on and off the pitch, which has born fruit for De club aan de Maas to the tune of a recent run of form both at home and abroad that has seen him bag 4-goals and add 7-assists in his last 11-appearances.

At the time of writing, Slot included Nelson in his starting XI as Feyenoord clashes with AS Roma in the final of the Europa Conference League, and the continued faith placed in him of late shows that he may finally have done enough to return to Arsenal and fight for his place in Arteta’s youth-based revolution.


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