Exclusive: Arsenal ace lacking ‘personality’ to play for the club and likely to seal transfer away – expert

Exclusive: Arsenal ace lacking 'personality' to play for the club and likely to seal transfer away - expert

Arsenal expert Charles Watts can’t see Albert Sambi Lokonga having it in him to come back and fight for his place at the Emirates Stadium despite his impressive form on loan at Luton Town this season.

The 24-year-old has looked greatly improved since joining Luton on loan, impressing in the Premier League after getting the chance to play more regularly, though it seems Watts still has his doubts about the Belgian.

Speaking exclusively to CaughtOffside for his latest Daily Briefing column, Watts explained that Lokonga looks like someone lacking the personality to play for a big club like Arsenal, and it might be that the reduced pressure at somewhere like Luton has allowed him to enjoy his football a bit more.

Watts thinks Lokonga is a talented player, but he still doubts there’s room for him in Mikel Arteta’s squad, particularly after the recent news of Jorginho signing a new contract to remain in north London for another year.

Lokonga transfer: What next for the loaned-out Arsenal midfielder?

“It was great to see Albert Sambi Lokonga score his first Luton goal at the weekend. Obviously it wasn’t enough to keep them up, but it capped an excellent loan spell for the midfielder,” Watts said.

“He was desperately in need of a season of regular first-team football and that’s why he got. He also showed he has the quality to make a decent impact in the Premier League.

Albert Sambi Lokonga has shone on loan at Luton

“It’s just not quite worked for Lokonga since his move to Arsenal. It’s not that he didn’t get the opportunities to impress, because he did. Arteta gave him plenty of chances, he just wasn’t able to really take them. There was a lack of personality about him when he played.

“You never really saw him take a game by the scruff of the neck. Whenever you watched him, you were never quite sure what sort of midfielder he was. He was neat and tidy, but that was about it. You need more about you to make it at a club like Arsenal, given what they are competing for and who they are up against.

“But that doesn’t mean Lokonga is a bad player. He came to Arsenal very young and sometimes it takes players time to settle. A move to a club like Luton was just what was needed for him to start to show his best form. It allowed him to step out of the limelight a bit, play without the pressure and scrutiny that comes from playing for a club like Arsenal. And you could see by his performances that he found his confidence as the season progressed….

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