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Smith sets his sights on first-team

By Mo Khan

Ryan Smith recently returned from a loan spell at Championship side Leicester City and has already set his sights on his next goal - the Arsenal first team.

When Arsenal.com caught up with the Islington-born 19-year-old in pre-season, Smith spoke of his desire to make a name for himself as quickly as possible. “I want people to know who I am this year,” he said.

Smith got the exposure he wanted during his stint at the Walkers Stadium. He started and starred in the FA Cup Third Round defeat of Premiership side Tottenham, a match shown live on terrestrial television. So does he think he has achieved this season’s target?

“I think I have,” smiled Smith. “But there’s always room for improvement. The next step is the first team.”

Now, having returned to London, Smith says he can look back with fond memories of his time in Leicester.

“It was brilliant at first and overall I’d say it went really well,” he said. “I really got along with the manager that brought me to the club - Craig Levein. But he left in mid-January, the new manager came in and I didn’t really feature as much.

“So I decided that the best option for me was to come back and play regular football in the reserves for Arsenal.”

The fleet-footed forward is very much aware of the need to turn his undoubted potential into goals and assists if he is to make it at the top level.

“I’ve been playing in the reserves long enough to know that whenever you play, you need to have an end product,” he said. “But if the boss thinks I’m ready and he selects me, then I am ready to test myself in the first team.”

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It'd great to get him into the first team and playing regularly. Surely it'd shut Pardew up, too - Smith is not only English, not only from London, but from Islington! That's more 'local' than his entire scummy team. :lala:
 

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Xtratime's Head of Humour 2007
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I can't see that happening for a while, he has JAR, Fred, Bob and even Clichy to dislodge, also Walcott as well.

I can see him being loaned out again before he gets near the 1st team.
 

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DougCoglan said:
He was dire at Leicester
I wouldn't go that far, he was their best player for the first month he was there, then he had a drop and then the new defensive manager came in, i wouldn't call that dire.
 

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DougCoglan said:
I saw him several times and he was dire. I suspect you read some kiss-arse biased nonsense on an Arsenal website and took their word as gospel.
I saw him several times as well and he was good on a couple of occasions and had a dip on others.

seems like me and you seem completely different though, you rate Ljungberg and you don't rate Xavi, i'm the opposite.

I am happy with my judgement more than yours. ;)
 

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Xtratime's Head of Humour 2007
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DougCoglan said:
I don't think Xavi is bad or anything - it's all relative - but if I had to pick ten world XI's he wouldn't get in any of them.

And Ljungberg is fantastic.
Ljungberg was fantastic in 2002, since then he has got progressively worse, and if he isn't scoring then what does he do in most games? this season he has had about 5 good games in the whole year.
 

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Last season he was one of our better players (and by that I mean top three) - he does shitloads - he works tirelessly, he makes things happen, his runs into the box are unique in our team - it seems if he doesn't score some people think he does nothing. No offence, but you and some others lack football knowledge.
 

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yeah he makes good runs, but that is not going to make me think of someone as a world class player, you need more than that as a midfielder like craft with the ball.

I think we will be much better in a 4-4-2 without him, our right hand side has never looked as strong as it is now with him in it, it was always pretty pony when he was there playing backwards and sideways passes into midfield or back to Lauren.
 
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