Gedion Zelalem has considerable soccer skills, but he also needs to play at this important juncture in his fledgling career. Arsenal and Rangers have found the perfect solution.
Arsenal has agreed to loan Zelalem to Rangers until January, with an option of extending his stay through the end of the 2015-16 season, the Guardian’s David Hytner reported Tuesday.
Zelalem appears set to spend the next four and a half months at Rangers in an effort to play regular, competitive games and help the fallen giant of Scottish soccer return to the Scottish Premier League.
Zelalem, 18, is one of the most exciting talents in Arsenal’s development pipeline. He made his Arsenal debut in 2013-14 but hasn’t broken into the Gunners’ first-team rotation since then. He spent the entire preseason with Arsenal, but manager Arsene Wenger is willing to farm him out in order to accelerate his progress.
Zelalem also bears the hopes of many American soccer fans. The German-born Ethiopian-American represented the United States at the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup, helping Team USA reach the quarterfinal.
Many tip Zelalem as a future star on the senior U.S. national team, given his club and international pedigree. Zelalem only can start down that road to stardom by testing himself in the heat of battle. The time for his first steps appears to be now.
Thumbnail photo via Twitter/@StarsStripesFC