Ian Wright praises Joe Willock after goalscoring Newcastle debut but admits concern over loanee’s future Arsenal role

Willock's stint at Newcastle got off to a flyer
Willock’s stint at Newcastle got off to a flyer (Picture: Getty Images)

Ian Wright was ‘delighted’ Joe Willock got his Newcastle loan spell off to a flying start with a goal on his debut, but doesn’t think the midfielder will ever be given the chance to fill a similar role at Arsenal.

The 21-year-old is spending the rest of the season on loan at St James’ Park after struggling to get game time under Mikel Arteta.

Willock’s debut couldn’t have gone much better as he converted Allan Saint-Maximin’s cutback after just 16 minutes to give his side the lead.

Arsenal Training Session
Willock was struggling for game time at Arsenal (Picture: Getty Images)

The Arsenal academy graduate had the license to get up and down the pitch for the Magpies as they went on to win the match 3-2, which lifted them 10 points above the relegation zone.

However, Gunners legend Wright can’t see Willock being afforded the opportunities to thrive as an all-encompassing midfielder at the Emirates.

‘Delighted for him,’ Wright said on Match of the Day. ‘That’s what he does, he’s a box-to-box midfielder.

‘I don’t think he would ever get the opportunity at Arsenal to play like he’d be able to play for Newcastle and stay in the team long enough to do it. I just don’t think they’d give him the opportunity to stay in the team.

‘This is what he does, he gets in the box and he can finish. That’s what he can do.

‘I was really pleased for him because he’s been at Arsenal for a long time, it must’ve been a very hard decision for him to go out on loan.

‘He did enjoy his game today, five tackles, winning the ball back and getting Newcastle on the break.

‘They’re going to need goals from the midfield and when you look at him trying to get in there, he gets in there with purpose and when he does get in there, he doesn’t panic.

‘Delighted for Joe as it’s a very integral time in his career at the minute.’

MORE : Arsenal loanee Joe Willock reacts to thrilling Newcastle debut win over Southampton

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