Joe Willock
BARCELONA, SPAIN - AUGUST 04: Joe Willock of Arsenal looks on during the Joan Gamper trophy friendly match between FC Barcelona and Arsenal at Nou Camp on August 04, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Joe Willock has greatly impressed thus far in the new season. The 20-year-old now has 20 senior appearances for the Gunners, including three of the first four matches of the new campaign. The club have rewarded him with a four-year contract.

Joe Willock Signs New Contract

A Long Time Coming

Willock has been at Arsenal since he was just four years old and has climbed through every level of the academy. The midfielder made his first-team debut under Arsene Wenger in the League Cup in September 2017 against Doncaster Rovers.

Joe Willock netted his first senior goal for the Gunners in the Europa League last season against Vorskla Poltava. He followed that up with a brace in the FA Cup against Blackpool in January.

The player said of the new contract, “To be at this club is an amazing feeling and I’ve always wanted to play for the Arsenal first team. Now I’m doing that, since the age of four and a half, it’s always been my dream. And to sign a new contract today is a brilliant feeling for me and my family.”

Sign of Things to Come?

The club will, of course, hope that Joe Willock can continue his development and become a real force in the English game.

However, in the grand scheme of things, Willock’s transition from the academy to the first team is something that Arsenal will want to replicate time and again in the coming years.

Technical director Edu Gaspar said in regards to the new deal, “Bringing young players through to the first team from the academy is an important part of our approach and Joe’s progression is a good example for how we want to work in the future.

“Joe has shown hard work and determination to get this far. He’s continuing to develop and we look forward to him making a big contribution to the club.”

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