Arsenal can save millions on striker transfer as Hale End wonderkid breaks club goal record

Chido Obi-Martin celebrates scoring for Arsenal U18s
Chido Obi-Martin celebrates scoring for Arsenal U18s -Credit:David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Arsenal U18 striker Chido Obi-Martin has set a new club goal scoring record. The young Gunner added to his hugely impressive goal tally with a sensational performance in a 9-0 win over Norwich City.

Obi-Marti, 16, received widespread acclaim in November after he scored ten goals in a single match, helping Arsenal U16s to an unbelievable 14-3 victory over Liverpool, aged 15. The Denmark U17 international has since stepped up to be a regular with the U18 side and has already trained with the senior squad on several occasions.

Before Saturday’s game against Norwich, Obi-Martin has scored an eye-catching 21 goals in just 15 league games for Arsenal U18s. The academy prospect continued his phenomenal scoring streak against the Canaries, needing just 45 minutes to break a goal record previously held by ex-Gunner Folarin Balogun.

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Obi-Martin did not take long to get his first goal of the game on Saturday, scoring in the first minute, as reported by Jeorge Bird. The youngster scored a 17-minute hat-trick and ended the first half with a remarkable five-goal haul. Obi-Martin completed a double hat-trick after the break, finishing the game with seven goals in total.

This saw him hit 28 goals for the season to break Folarin Balogun’s scoring record for Arsenal U18s (25), held since the 2018/19 season, in three fewer games than the USA international, despite being a year younger than he was at the time. The striker’s feat is even more impressive, given that he is a schoolboy and has yet to sign a scholarship or professional contract with the Gunners.

Obi-Martin's latest performance means the forward has scored more than three times in four of his last seven games, scoring 24 goals in that period. The rate of his development suggests that he could shortly become a regular for the U21 team before attempting to force himself into the first team squad.

The forward’s rapid rise through the ranks comes at a time when the Gunners are being linked with big-money moves for centre forward in the summer. While Obi-Martin may not immediately feature in Mikel Arteta’s plans, the 16-year-old could certainly save the club money in future transfer windows, if he remains on his current trajectory.