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Ex-Arsenal forward Jay Emmanuel-Thomas set to join NorthEast United

Published at :January 9, 2020 at 3:42 PM
Modified at :January 10, 2020 at 9:52 PM
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The striker captained the club's U-18 side while coming through the club's youth ranks.

Former Arsenal forward Jay Emmanuel-Thomas is set to join Indian Super League outfit NorthEast United as their first acquisition in the January transfer window.

The Highlanders are in a spot of bother and Robert Jarni desperately needs a forward with their talisman, Asamoah Gyan likely to be out for the rest of the season.Spreaking on the hanian following the defeat to FC Goa Robert Harni said, "Yes, Gyan is injured. Unfortunately, he can’t play and I think, it’s finished for him. We are looking to bring in two new players.”

Therefore, Jay Emmanuel-Thomas could be a great addition to the squad subject to the completion of a medical. The forward comes with loads of experience, after graduating from the highly-regarded Arsenal academy. He was also the Arsenal U-18 captain during his time at the club.

Watch: Jay Emmanuel-Thomas in action for Bristol City

He gradually rose through the ranks and even featured for the senior team on multiple occasions. Apart from the Gunners, the 29-year old has plied his trade at several English clubs including Blackpool, Doncaster and Cardiff City.

Then he joined Ipswich Town in July 2011, but failed to make his mark there. His best time in England was when he joined Bristol City in 2013, scoring 21 goals. His partnership with Sam Baldock was lauded by the fans that season.

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Later, he joined Queens Park Rangers, after his contract with Bristol City expired in the summer of 2015. But, the striker failed to make his mark, as he was loaned out first to MK Dons in 2016 and then to Gillingham, where Emmanuel-Thomas found his shooting boots again.

However, he then moved out to Asia and joined Thai League 1 outfit, PTT Rayong in January 2019. But, the 29-year old experienced forward was not able to make a solid impact in the Thai League last season, as he only scored a single goal and assisted twice in 11 league appearances. His appearance in the Thai FA Cup was only from the bench for a handful of minutes.

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Emmanuel-Thomas will bring a lot of bite in attack for NorthEast United and coupled with his experience he can be the leader Robert Jarni needs right now. After a good start to the campaign, the Highlanders have lost their way completely and they need someone who can lead them from the front.

Emmmanuel Thomas is also a very versatile player. Predominantly a forward, he is equally capable of playing out wide on the flanks. He has also featured as an attacking midfielder in the past and his ability to play in multiple positions will be a huge help for Jarni and his team, as they enter the business end of the season.

NorthEast United FC are winless in the last five ISL matches and are currently languishing in eighth position in the points table. The Highlanders will be hoping that Emmanuel-Thomas brings a lot of goals along with him to Indian shores and ensures a top four finish for Robert Jarni's men.

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