On 26th July unexpected news came out that Arsenal were close on completing the signing of their second right back of the summer in Calum Chambers and on the 29th July the signing was complete. Although many people were delighted about this signing it created a debate on where the future lies for Carl Jenkinson.
A surprise signing, from League One side Charlton for £1 million, Carl Jenkinson is Arsenal through and through. He made his debut in the Champions League qualifer first leg against Udinese, replacing Johan Djourou in the 55th minute. As injuries mounted with both Djourou and Gibbs, he started in the home game against Liverpool, where despite the best efforts of a makeshift defence, Liverpool won 2-0.
Jenkinson has had a decent spell at Arsenal but his performances have been limited due to the consistency of Bacary Sagna. In the season of 2012/2013 whilst Sagna was out due to injury, Jenkinson showed how good he can be when he was given a run of games, it showed what he was able to do earning him an England cap. With stand out performances against Bayern Munich, Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester City there was a preview on what was to come in the future.
In the season of 2013/2014 Jenkinson made a big error in the Capital One Cup match aginst Chelsea and doubts were being made on his future. As the season progressed, everytime he was called upon he was able to do a good performance but again his appearances were cut short by the consistancy of Bacary Sagna. In the final game of the season Arsenal went away to Norwich, after Aaron Ramsey’s stunning volley, Jenkinson got the second goal of the game after Lukas Podolski’s shot had been blocked. He said after the game
“It took a while but I got there in the end. Since I was a kid I’ve been an Arsenal fan, I’ve scored that goal 100 times in my back garden and celebrated like I’m celebrating in front of the fans. I’ve done it for real today and it was the best feeling in the world. I think you could tell by my celebration.”
There is no doubt that he has talent and Jenkinson being an Arsenal fan it shows he will give 100% in every match. The one thing that he is missing in the crucial first team experience, with the signings Calum Chambers and Mathieu Debuchy, Jenkinson’s loan to West Ham will be crucial. With Arsene Wenger’s plans looking like Chambers future lies at centre back, Jenkinson could be his long term replacement. Choosing to turn down a £3million bid from Hull and loaning Jenkinson shows Arsene clearly still think the English defender can have a future at Arsenal.