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Paul Merson believes a ‘consistent’ Eddie Nketiah would ensure Arsenal finish in the top four and qualify for next season’s Champions League.
The 22-year-old made just his second Premier League start this season and took full advantage of the rare opportunity.
Eddie Nketiah had arguably his finest night in an Arsenal shirt against Chelsea
Arsenal are level on points with fourth placed Tottenham with six games remaining – including a fixture against each other on May 12.
When asked on Sky Sports whether Nketiah could be the ‘joker in the pack’ for Arsenal in their fight for Europe, Merson gestured flipping a coin and shrugged his shoulders.
He then added: ‘He could be a four out of ten next week. He could be, if he wasn’t, he’d be in the team every week.
‘That’s his second start all season so the consistency levels are not there but if he gets consistent for three or four games then Arsenal come fourth.
Nketiah impressed in the 4-2 win over Chelsea bagging his team a brace in the game
‘He’s a natural goalscorer. His first goal is a phenomenal finish and his second is just as good.’
Merson then went on to say that Nketiah is a better goalscorer than Lacazette.
‘He’s willing to run beyond, Lazacette wouldn’t chase that first one down. He wouldn’t have scored those two goals even though he is a good footballer, probably a better footballer (than Nketiah) but not a better finisher.’
Paul Merson believes Arsenal will finish fourth as long as Nketiah stays consistent
He also added that Nketiah is a ‘better finisher’ than Lacazette who is the ‘better player’
Merson’s co-pundit, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink pointed out that his brace could come at a good time for both the player and Arsenal.
He said: ‘It will give him belief especially to do it against a big team. He’s earned his place in the team in the next match. I think it will give him wings.
‘And at the right time for his team who have a few important matches coming up. It can only do him good.’
It was Nketiah’s first goals in the Premier League this season, having previously netted five in the Carabao Cup.
His future though is in doubt with his contract at Arsenal expiring at the end of the season.
Source: DailyMail Sports