Former Liverpool, Newcastle and Manchester United striker Michael Owen has tipped Arsenal’s Eddie Nketiah to become a “goal machine”.
Owen knows a thing or two about putting the ball in the back of the net, having scored 150 Premier League goals across his career. He also scored 40 times for England.
Now a pundit, he believes Nketiah has what it takes to succeed at the highest level, after being impressed by him in England Under-21s’ 5-0 win over Albania on Tuesday.
He is already the Under-21s’ all-time leading scorer, and extended his record in that game. Nketiah scored a brace, but missed a penalty in between his two goals to miss out on a hat-trick.
However, Owen praised the Arsenal starlet for his mentality to bounce back and find the net again.
“He’s very good,” Owen said.
“He’s got a real smell for it, hasn’t he? He knows where the ball’s going to drop.
“I like his movement. I like his hunger to score goals.
“Some players are confidence players. If you miss a penalty and you’re a confidence player, you go missing all game.
“If you’ve just got pure self-belief, it just shrugs off you and you’re just onto the next one. With that type of attitude, with the way he plays, he’s just going to be a goal machine all his career.”
All horizons open for Nketiah
Owen continued by backing Nketiah to achieve big things in the game – but admitted he needs to build up regular gametime first.
He said: “The key for him is obviously trying to get consistently into that Arsenal team, and then all his horizons are open.”
Nketiah has started just one Premier League game this season, but has come on in seven others and has scored one goal. He has also added another goal in the Europa League, a competition in which he has started all three games so far.
In total, the 21-year-old has already made 50 appearances for Arsenal and scored 10 goals. He also scored five goals in 19 games in a brief loan spell at Leeds United.