The 19 year old left Charlton at the end of last season and had been training with Norwich City after accepting an offer of a trial with the Premier League club. He made two appearances for Norwich’s Under-21 side and scored one goal, leading to manager Chris Hughton deciding to offer the towering defender a six-month deal.
The Nigerian defender decided against signing with the club and has now put pen to paper on a contract with Arsenal and confirmed the news on his Twitter that he has become a member of Arsene Wenger’s squad after spending 10 years on the books at Charlton. He said:
Delighted to announce that I have officially signed for Arsenal. Can’t wait to see what the next two seasons here have in store for me.
It was sad to end my ten year spell with Charlton this summer but I can’t speak highly enough of all of the wonderful people I met during my ten years there and I wish all those at Charlton the best for the future as I will always have a soft spot for the club and its fans.
Ajayi spent a spell on loan with non-league Dartford last season, where he made three appearances, and his move to Arsenal represents a rapid rise having never played in the league for Charlton. The player underwent a trial period with Arsenal last month before the club took the decision to offer him a permanent deal, and Ajayi becomes the second player to join from Charlton after Jenkinson.
He featured for Arsenal u-21 twice during his trail, one where he scored a header against Blackburn Rovers, and a second at the Emirates against West Bromwich Albion. The young defender has represented Nigeria at the U20 level but was born in England and will qualify to play for either national side. Even though the Gunners are yet to announce the signing on their official site the move looks to have been completed.
Ajayi will hope he can replicate what Jenkinson has done and earn a bright future at Emirates. He might not make an immediate impact on Arsenal’s first team but he is the one for the future and is a typical Wenger signing. It may not be the signing that will excite fans but he is reportedly very talented and we should wait and see how much impact he will make in the coming years.
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