Arsenal youngster Emile Smith Rowe welcomed comparisons with Bruno Fernandes and said he looks up to the Manchester United superstar.
Smith Rowe has been integral to Arsenal’s resurrgence in recent weeks, coming into the team on Boxing Day when the Gunners beat Chelsea 3-1.
Mikel Arteta’s side have not lost since then, picking up four wins in the Premier League and recovering from their dire start to the campaign.
The 20-year-old from Croydon has brought creativity to the Gunners side, which it had been seriously lacking, an addition illustrated by the 10 chances he has created since coming into the team.
Only Bruno Fernandes has created as many chances as Smith Rowe in the Premier League over the same period and the Englishman is delighted to be talked about in the same breath as the Portuguese.
‘Nah definitely not [bad company to be in]. I look up to him as a player, his stats are crazy,’ Smith Rowe told Sky Sports.
‘The way he plays is really good, it’s obviously a good achievement, I guess.’
Smith Rowe turned in another great performance in the 3-0 win over Newcastle on Monday night at the Emirates, setting up Bukayo Saka’s goal in the second half.
He has hailed his manager for giving him the confidence and the opportunity to show his talent.
‘He tells me so much to play free, clear my mind and just be confident,’ Smith Rowe said of Arteta. ‘If I make a mistake, to carry on and forget about it.
‘For me, to have a manager like Mikel, he’s played for the club, he gives me so much confidence.
‘I’m really happy to get these opportunities.’
Smith Rowe and Saka are causing a lot of excitement for Arsenal fans as they keep the likes of Willian and Nicolas Pepe out of the first team.
Arteta says they have got what they deserve and has been thoroughly pleased with their displays.
‘I think they both deserve to play,’ said the manager. ‘They were really good tonight and I’m really pleased with what they’re doing for the team.’
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