Arsene Wenger's League Cup debutants: what happened next for 48 young Gunners

Arsenal 6-1 Coventry: 26 Sep, 2012

Gunners trounce League One side with goals from Giroud, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Arshavin, Walcott (2) and Miquel. 

Damian Martinez: The Argentine keeper is still contracted to Arsenal, and appeared in the infamous 7-5 victory over Reading in 2012/13. Previously enjoyed loan spells at Oxford United, Sheffield Wednesday, Rotherham, Wolves and is now at Getafe in Spain. Unlikely to make an impact in Wenger's first team with Petr Cech and David Ospina ahead in the pecking order. 

Martin Angha: Joined Arsenal from Zurich in 2010 and made his debut here, where Arsenal were rarely tested. Left the club this summer and joined FC Nurnberg in the Bundesliga, but didn't make a huge impact for the German side and dropped down a division to 1860 Munich in 2014/15 where he counted former Gunner Volz as a team-mate. Joined St. Gallen in his native Switzerland this summer.

Serge Gnabry: The one that got away. Gnabry's debut here was quickly followed by his Premier League bow within a month. Yet the explosive German winger suffered a knee injury which later stalled his progress and kept him out for much of 2014/15. He barely featured in an aborted loan spell at West Brom, yet after he joined Werder Bremen for £5m in 2016, he proved a Bundesliga hit, scoring 11 goals in 27 games. Now a Germany international, the 22-year-old signed for Bayern Munich this summer (although he has been loaned to Hoffenheim for the season).

Reading 5-7 Arsenal (aet): 30 Oct, 2012

A bonkers game where Arsenal rally from 4-0 down after 37 minutes to storm back in the most dramatic fashion. Walcott grabs hat-trick. 

Thomas Eisfeld: The solitary signing of another barren transfer window for the Gunners in January 2012 from Borussia Dortmund, Eisfeld made his bow with half an hour remaining at the Madejski Stadium. He didn't play again until the following season, where he grabbed another pair of League Cup outings (and scored at West Brom), but never established himself and joined Fulham permanently in 2014/15. Failed to make his mark at Craven Cottage, though, and after a loan spell with German second-tier side Bochum, joined them permanently.

Jernade Meade: The pint-sized left-back hasn't made a league appearance for any club, despite joining Swansea's development squad in 2013, then being loaned out to Luton. He has, however, a Champions League start under his belt from 2012/13 against Olympiakos (who else?) after this 15-minute extra-time cameo at Reading. In 2014, joined the Spartan South Midlands Football League's Hadley, then spent a season at St Albans, before he signed for Swedish side AFC Eskilstuna in 2016.

West Brom 1-1 Arsenal: 25 Sep, 2013

Saido Berahino cancels out Eisfeld's second-half strike but Arsenal advance on penalties. 

Isaac Hayden: Despite coming through the youth team as a centre-back, cultured youngster Hayden made his debut here as a central midfielder for the injured Mathei Flamini. He wouldn't play again for another year, then spent a season-long loan at Hull in 2015/16. Hayden signed for Newcastle last summer, helped the Mapgies out of the Championship and is now playing regularly in the Premier League.

Hector Bellerin: Former Barcelona product Bellerin made an inconspicuous start to his Gunners career with a substitute appearance at The Hawthorns, before impressing on loan at Watford in the Championship. The marauding right-back finally got his big break in 2014/15 when he was chucked in at the deep end against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. Has become a firm fixture in the first team since that season, the rapid 22-year-old full-back also earning three caps for Spain.

Kristoffer Olsson: Replaced fellow youth team graduate Hayden and scored in the shoot-out, but this was the young Swede's sole Arsenal appearance. Joined FC Midtjylland on loan almost a year later and made the move permanent just over two months later. Joined Swedish side AIK at the start of 2017.

Sheffield Wednesday 3-0 Arsenal: 27 Oct, 2015

Under-strength Gunners are put to the sword by Wednesday in this fourth-round clash

Alex Iwobi: Pick of the four debutants in this match, the Nigerian international went on to score twice in his first two Premier League games (against Everton and against Watford). Featured in a total of 38 matches last season and was an unused substitute in Arsenal’s FA Cup final win. The 21-year-old showed a new dimension to his game this season with an assured central midfield display in the 0-0 draw with Chelsea.

Glen Kamara: Sole appearance for the Finnish midfielder who lasted an hour, by which time Arsenal were already 3-0 down. Was loaned to Southend then Colchester, before signing a permanent deal with Scottish Premiership side Dundee this summer.

Ismael Bennacer: A notable debut in that the Algerian midfielder was a substitute for a substitute - yet somehow arrived in the game after only 19 minutes. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain limped off after five minutes, but his replacement Theo Walcott lasted just 14 minutes before a calf injury struck. Cue Bennacer, who departed the club this summer as he signed for Italian Serie B side Empoli.

Krystian Bielik: Polish centre-back came on for fellow debutant Kamara after an hour with the Gunners already in deep trouble. Played again in the League Cup last season, then spent the second half of 2016/17 on loan at Birmingham where he featured in 10 Championship games. The 19-year-old had shoulder surgery in September but should be fit by December and a January loan move seems likely.

Nottingham Forest 0-4 Arsenal: 20 Sep, 2016

Granit Xhaka, Lucas Perez (2) and Oxlade-Chamberlain score as Forest are beaten despite the presence of Lord Bendtner in their ranks

Chris Willock: Highly-rated England U19 winger came off the bench for for Chuba Akpom after 83 minutes, meaning he was at least on the pitch to help celebrate Oxlade-Chamberlain’s injury time fourth goal. Also made a substitute appearance in the 2-0 win over Reading in the next round, but this summer saw a surprise move for the teenager; Willock turned down a contract extension at Arsenal in order to join Benfica in his hunt for more first-team football.


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