Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has revealed the club looked to loan out Reiss Nelson during the summer but the forward insisted he wanted to stay and fight for his place.
The 20-year-old has played just 81 minutes of first-team football this season and did not make the bench for Sunday’s Premier League defeat at Leicester – despite Willian being out injured.
Nelson started three of the first four games of Arteta’s reign as Arsenal boss following his appointment last December.
He is likely to play some part in the Europa League Group B clash at home to Dundalk on Thursday as Arteta explained why the England Under-21s international has been used so sparingly of late.
“We ended up with a large squad at the end of the transfer market,” he said. “We had a few plans in mind with Reiss. One of them was as well to send him on loan to get more minutes because of the competition we have upfront.
“The reality is he has been really good in training. He wants to stay here. He wants to fight for his place.”