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Arsenal re-entering the market for this highly-rated 17-year-old ace could serve them well in the long run

VILA REAL SANTO ANTONIO, PORTUGAL - FEBRUARY 11: Michael Kostka (R) of Germany U16 challenges Joelson Fernandes (L) of Portugal U16 during UEFA Development Tournament match between U16 Germany and U16 Portugal at VRSA Stadium on February 11, 2019 in Vila Real Santo Antonio, Portugal. (Photo by Ricardo Nascimento/Getty Images)

Why Arsenal should go back for Joelson Fernandes in the future

According to The SunArsenal failed in their efforts to sign Joelson Fernandes in the last transfer window. His father wanted him to sign a new contract at Sporting CP which would shoot up his release clause to £54.5million. Several other big teams such as Liverpool, Manchester City, Ajax and Barcelona were also after his signature.

Profile

Born in Guinea-Bissau, Joelson Fernandes moved to Portugal at a young age and joined Sporting Lisbon’s youth ranks back in 2012.

The 17-year-old was promoted to train with the first-team squad following the Covid-19 pandemic. He made 4 senior appearances for the Portuguese heavyweights towards the back end of the previous campaign (source – Transfermarkt).

Sporting’s Portuguese forward Joelson Fernandes (L) challenges Vitoria Setubal’s Portuguese forward Zequinha Branco during the Portuguese League football match between Sporting CP and Vitoria FC at the Jose Alvalade stadium in Lisbon on July 21, 2020. (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP via Getty Images)

Fernandes has represented Portugal at various youth levels. Currently, he is a part of the U-21s. He remains eligible to represent Guinea-Bissau in the future.

Why Arsenal must return for Fernandes

Although the Gunners’ bid was knocked back (source – The Sun), they should not stop pursuing the talented youngster. At 17 years of age, the winger has made his mark in Sporting, so much so that he was given a run in the senior team.

If anything, Sporting are known for their tendency to produce some of the best young players in Europe. Joelson Fernandes could well be another player in that line. Blessed with good pace, the winger can leave defenders in the dust with his uber-cool dribbling skills. He has a knack for the spectacular and often gets the better of his opposite number by taking them on.

VILA REAL SANTO ANTONIO, PORTUGAL – FEBRUARY 11: Mesut Kesik (L) of Germany U16 challenges Joelson Fernandes (R) of Portugal U16 during UEFA Development Tournament match between U16 Germany and U16 Portugal at VRSA Stadium on February 11, 2019 in Vila Real Santo Antonio, Portugal. (Photo by Ricardo Nascimento/Getty Images)

Sure, Arsenal have a good fleet of wingers but that does not mean they can’t recruit Fernandes for the future. He is genuinely talented and given the progress he has made in recent years, one can only think how far he will go. Arsenal would be wise to make an effort to sign the youngster sooner than later.

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Joelson Fernandes is one for the future and Arsenal could be a good place to further develop his talents. The club have always been encouraging of youth and it could be a beneficial step in the youngster’s career to make the move to London.

Written by Sourav Ghosh

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