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Arsenal Midfielder Emile Smith Rowe out to match Anelka’s scoring record against Watford.

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LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 19: Emile Smith Rowe of Arsenal celebrates after scoring their side's first goal during the Premier League match between Arsenal and Brentford at Emirates Stadium on February 19, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

The Arsenal youngster can become the first Gunner aged 21 or under to reach double figures in the Premier League since Nicolas Anelka in 1998/99. 

Arsenal midfielder Emile Smith Rowe has been pictured back in training as Mikel Arteta’s side prepare for Sunday’s trip to Watford.(Getty Images) 

The midfielder missed last week’s dramatic win over Wolves due to illness after not training during the week after scoring in their win against Brentford.

The 21-year-old has scored four goals in his last seven games, taking his tally to 9 in 15 Premier League starts and he could well match the record set by Anelka by finding the net against relegation battling Watford on Sunday.

Interesting Stats 

  • Watford have kept three clean sheets in their six Premier League matches under Roy Hodgson, as many as in their previous 38 in the competition under four different managers.
  • Arsenal have found the net in all 15 of their Premier League matches v Watford. Only against West Bromwich Albion, with 26 matches, do they have a better 100 per cent scoring rate in the competition.

The difference in quality between the two sides is more than evident, and if he’s given the opportunity to play – which he’s likely to at some point – Smith Rowe may be afforded the opportunity to match the Frenchman.

Emile Smith Rowe has scored four goals in his last seven games, taking his tally to 9 in 15 Premier League starts. (Getty Images)

It’s likely that Smith Rowe may not end up with 17 goals in the league this season as Anelka did, but just getting across the 10-goal mark is so much more impressive when you take everything into account.

For starters, Smith Rowe is a midfielder, not a striker like Anelka was. Secondly, the Arsenal side now is definitely an exciting one, but it’s nowhere near as good as the one Wenger had back in 98/99.

Smith Rowe’s nine Premier League goals this season sees him sit atop the Arsenal scoring charts, with the 21-year-old boasting two more than closest rival Bukayo Saka.

 

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