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West Ham and Arsenal fight for second youngest debutant in club's history with Tawanda Chirewa emerging as a wild card signing

West Ham and Arsenal fight for second youngest debutant in club’s history with Tawanda Chirewa emerging as a wild card signing.

West Ham and Arsenal are vying for the signature of young Ipswich Town midfielder Chirewa this summer.

Reports abound last week that David Moyes and Mikel Arteta are both interested in Ipswich’s 18-year-old history maker.

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The likes of TWTD claim West Ham and Arsenal want Chirewa, who became the second youngest debutant in Ipswich’s 143-year history when he came on as a substitute in a defeat at Colchester United in an EFL Trophy group stage match back in 2019 – aged just 16 years and 31 days.

Moyes has stated on several occasions he wants to build his “new” West Ham around young, hungry, talented players.

And his former protege Arteta appears to be doing something very similar at Arsenal.

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Chirewa certainly fits the recruitment philosophy of both the Hammers and the Gunners.

He was one of the top performers for the U23s during the 2021-22 campaign, scoring 12 times as the side coached by ex West Ham midfielder Kieron Dyer and then John McGreal topped Professional Development League Two South.

“The Shenfield-raised forward was due to be out of contract this summer but the Blues recently took an option to keep him for a further season and are keen to keep him at Portman Road longer term,” TWTD reported last week.

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“However, we understand his performances for the U23s have attracted the attention of the Gunners and Hammers among others keen to recruit him into their development squads.”

West Ham and Arsenal in a fight for the second youngest debutant in a club’s history suggests Chirewa could very much be emerging as a wild card signing.

Moyes and Arteta may feel he is too promising a talent to allow another club to snap up.

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So both West Ham and Arsenal may be tempted to bring him into their setup in order to get a close look at Chirewa with a view to promoting him to the first team if he shines.

A wild card signing where the risk to reward is relatively low.

And a close look at the TWTD message boards and comments shows Ipswich fans are seriously angry at the prospect of West Ham or Arsenal snaffling up the hugely promising player.

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