Arsenal of England youngster, James Olayinka is relishing signing his first professional contract with the English Premier League club, and believes he can make a huge impact for the team in years to come.
The 18-year-old midfielder, who has played 20 times this season in all competitions for The Gunners’ youth squad, is eager to hit the ground running under the guidance of the club legend, Freddie Ljungberg, who is now coaching the youngsters.
Olayinka recalled that he has grown through the ranks with the London side for 12 years and feels honoured that his efforts have been largely appreciated with the contract offer.
He acknowledged that his progression has not been on oiled ousters, but noted that hard work and dedication have brought him this far, which he aims to continue in days ahead.
Olayinka added: “Yeah, it’s been a long journey and there’s been ups and down, but to get to this stage is testament to the hard work.
“It’s a great feeling. I’ve been here for about 11 or 12 years now. So, to finally get to this stage is a dream come true.
“It’s a proud moment for me and my family. I’m happy that the club have rewarded me with a contract.”