Arsene Wenger says Alex Iwobi’s decision to play for Nigeria is a loss for England after he inspired Arsenal to a 4-0 win over Watford.
Iwobi scored one and made another at Emirates Stadium, with the other goals coming from Alexis Sanchez, Hector Bellerin and Theo Walcott to help keep the Gunners’ faint title hopes alive.
The 19-year-old, who came through the club’s academy, has now scored two in as many games for Wenger’s side and he continues to flourish while the likes of Walcott and Joel Campbell remain on the bench.
The Nigerian-born forward played for England at junior level and it was thought he might commit to the senior side, but the possibility was ended when he played in an African Nations Cup qualifier for Nigeria against Egypt last week.
“Is he a loss for England? Yes,” Wenger said. “We have values in our club that are maybe not rated always, but one of them is to give a chance to young people and educate them.
“Every year we bring players out and not many can say that. I’m happy Alex is one of them. He arrived here at the age of seven or eight. He’s completely integrated in the way we want to play football.
“He’s worked with us since the start of the season and it shows because when he came in he was used to the way we want to play.”