May 24, 2024

Wrexham loan star Arthur Okonkwo has said it will be ‘a waiting game’ as he weighs up his next move after leaving Arsenal.

Wrexham had young goalkeeper Okonkwo in on loan over the entire 2023/24 campaign

The 22-year-old had previously spent spells with Crewe Alexandra and Austrian side Sturm Graz alongside playing extensively for the Gunners’ U18s and U21s sides in his development years.

Okonkwo has really made a name for himself in North Wales though. Following his arrival in September, the ‘keeper kept 16 clean sheets in 40 games and played a key role in helping Phil Parkinson tighten up the backline at the Racecourse Ground.

His deal with parent club Arsenal expires this summer though, and a release is on the cards. After such a strong season, Wrexham have been swiftly linked with a reunion deal.

However, The Athletic notes that other clubs have been alerted to his situation, including some in the Championship. Okonkwo has refused to be drawn on what’s next for him though, explaining that he’ll be weighing up his options before making a decision over his fate.

He said:

“I haven’t looked too much into things at the moment. But I will, very soon.

“It is about looking at all my opportunities and seeing which is the best for me. I’ve loved it at Wrexham and they will stay in my heart forever.

“It’s more of a waiting game now and seeing what is the right move for myself.”

Returning to Wrexham?

Wrexham have been linked with a permanent deal for Okonkwo and following his successful loan, that’s no surprise. He’s proven himself as a capable ‘keeper at a senior level and he could go on to hold down that starting spot for years to come as the Welsh side rise through the leagues.

He’ll be a regular starter under Parkinson and the move could make for a logical next step for him following his success in League Two.

Championship interest in the shot-stopper could prove tempting and it’s definitely a level the departing Arsenal man could find success at.

However, he’d be guaranteed regular minutes at Wrexham and on the club’s current trajectory, it could be that he ends up in the second-tier sooner rather than later even if he opts against a move.

A patient approach

Clubs will be keen to get their business done in the early stages of the summer transfer window but with Okonkwo heading for free agency, he’s wise to take a patient approach regarding his future.

This way, he can weigh up the options he has and ensure the decision he makes is the right one. That’s going to be important too as he bids to kick on away from Arsenal after his impressive loan.

It will be intriguing to see if the door does open for Okonkwo to head to the Championship. Even then though, if there’s a team lower down the ladder capable of beating second-tier sides to a signing, it’s Wrexham.

They have to feel they’re in with a good chance of signing the goalkeeper this summer but it remains to be seen just what decision the talented Okonkwo comes to.

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