The fabled ‘British Core’ were meant to form the backbone of Arsenal for the future, but fast forward five years, and there is but one of that group of British youngsters still at the club.
And it isn’t the one we expected.
Carl Jenkinson is the last representative of that talented gaggle of players hailing from thee shores. Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey, Keiran Gibbs and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have all flown the coup, leaving die-hard Gooner and fan-favourite Jenkinson as the last man standing.
And now the man known as ‘Jenko’ could be on his way out of the club too.
West Bromwich Albion are apparently interested in bringing the right-back to The Hawthorns. If true, he will be reunited with Gibbs, who has tied down the left-back spot for the Baggies.
Jenkinson has been at the club since 2011 in what was a dream move for the Arsenal fan. Since then, Jenkinson has made 41 appearances for the club, and has enjoyed to fruitful loan spells to West Ham in the process.
His highlight though, has to be his full England cap he earned while at Arsenal, and his first ever Arsenal goal, which he scored against Norwich. His celebration was the way any Arsenal fan would celebrate if they scored a goal for the team they adore, and it only served to strengthen the bond between player and fans.
Jenko does seem to be on the way out though. With Hector Bellerin and Ainsley Maitland-Niles ahead of him in the pecking order, a move would suit the defender, and two destinations are being reported on. A move to the Midlands with West Brom, or a move to Scotland with Celtic, with Kieran Tierney as part of the entire package deal.
The last destination is a long shot, but it is a rumour that has persisted. Either way, Jenkinson looks to be very close to the exit door at The Emirates, and the last bastion of the British core will have departed.