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Following Ballard last season, John-Jules heads to Blackpool on loan

The young forward is looking for a redo after an injury plagued ‘20/21 season.

Arsenal Training Session Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

After two disappointing loan spells, Tyreece John-Jules will get his biggest chance yet, as he joins the newly-promoted Blackpool side in the Championship this season. Arsenal announced this week that the 20-year-old forward will be going on a season-long loan. This move comes on the heels of Daniel Ballard’s loan at Blackpool last season in which he started at center back as they won promotion from League One through the playoffs.

John-Jules has been with Arsenal since the age of eight, picking up 35 goals and 13 assists from 68 matches during his time with the U18 and U23 sides, but has yet to appear for the first team. He has made appearances for each level of the England national team setup from U16 through U19.

During the 2019/20 season, he featured regularly for the U23s before joining Lincoln City in League One for the second half of the year. He managed six starts and one goal before the season was halted due to COVID-19 lockdowns.

For the 2020/21 campaign, he returned to League One, this time with Doncaster Rovers. Tyreece was off to a great start with a goal and an assist in the opening four matches of the season before he picked up a thigh injury. Two months later he returned, picking up two goals and an assist in his first three matches back before suffering another muscle injury that would sideline him until April. He worked back for the final seven matches of the season, once again contributing with two goals and an assist.

A season of what-if for John-Jules. In total, he managed five goals and three assists from 18 matches, but with Doncaster finishing just ten points out of the playoff positions, both the club and the player could have had such a different season if things had gone differently.

Now he is getting an even better opportunity, thanks to his attacking contributions while healthy last season and the relationship built between Arsenal and Blackpool. After seeing how well Blackpool helped develop Daniel Ballard (now on a loan move to fellow Championship side Millwall), and looking to bolster their attack as they try to solidify their place in the Championship, this is a great match for the player and club.

As James Benge of CBS Sports noted, Arsenal is continuing to build relationships with a few clubs within the English pyramid that have seen successful loan moves in the past. In 2019, midfielder Ben Sheaf went on loan to Doncaster, followed by John-Jules last season and now Matt Smith this coming season. In 2019, Daniel Ballard joined Swindon Town followed by Matt Smith last season.

Here is a quick rundown of the transfer activity for the Arsenal academy to date.

Academy Summer Transfer Market Recap:

  • Daniel Oyegoke - Brentford (Premier League), permanent move.
  • Zech Medley - Oostende (Belgian First Division), permanent move.
  • Trae Coyle - FC Lausanne–Sport (Swiss Super League), permanent move.
  • Mark McGuinness - Cardiff City (Championship), permanent move.
  • Ben Sheaf - Coventry City (Championship), permanent move.
  • Daniel Ballard - Millwall (Championship), full-season loan.
  • Matt Smith - Doncaster Rovers (League One), full-season loan.
  • Nikolaj Moller - FC Viktoria Koln (German 3.Liga), full-season loan.
  • Deyan Iliev - SKF Sered (Slovakia Super League), full-season loan.
  • Tyreece John-Jules - Blackpool (Championship), full-season loan.
  • Mika Biereth - joined the Arsenal U23s from Fulham’s academy.

Best of luck to Tyreece John-Jules in the Championship this season. You can see his Blackpool side take on Daniel Ballard and Millwall on August 28th.