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Arsenal star Emile Smith Rowe compared to Robert Pires for Rio Ferdinand

‘He’s got a bit of the Robert Pires vibe’: Rio Ferdinand compares Arsenal star Emile Smith Rowe to ‘Invincibles’ legend amid the midfielder who plays a key role in London’s excellent 10-game unbeaten streak the Gunners


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Rio Ferdinand believes Emile Smith Rowe has been the key player in Arsenal’s excellent unbeaten streak and has compared him to the club’s former midfield stars Robert Pires and Alexander Hleb.

After a lousy start to the season that left them in last place after three matches, Arsenal have gone on a 10-game unbeaten streak in all competitions, with Mikel Arteta’s team having moved up the table to the European contest, as well as the quarterfinals of the League Cup.

While former Manchester United defender Ferdinand praised the Gunners’ team ethic, he singled out Smith Rowe for playing a leading role.

Emile Smith Rowe has been in excellent shape for Arsenal at the start of the season

Emile Smith Rowe has been in excellent shape for Arsenal at the start of the season

Speaking ahead of Smith Rowe’s England call-up on Tuesday, he said at the Rio Ferdinand presents FIVE YouTube channel that: ‘There is a team, there is a united team. There is a union that I have not seen in Arsenal for a long time.

“There is no one doing more right now than Emile Smith Rowe.”

Ferdinand compared the midfielder to Robert Pires, who was a key member of the last Arsenal team to win the league 17 years ago, where they spent the season undefeated and became known as the ‘Invincibles’.

Robert Pires was part of Arsenal's last title-winning campaign in 2004

Robert Pires was part of Arsenal's last title-winning campaign in 2004

Alex Hleb was a key midfielder for the Gunners for three seasons before leaving in 2008

Alex Hleb was a key midfielder for the Gunners for three seasons before leaving in 2008

Rio Ferdinand has compared the midfielder to previous Arsenal stars Robert Pires (left) and Alexander Hleb (right), while claiming there is more to come from the 21-year-old.

Ferdinand insists that Smith Rowe has been a key driver of Arsenal's recent resurgence

Ferdinand insists that Smith Rowe has been a key driver of Arsenal's recent resurgence

Ferdinand insists that Smith Rowe has been a key driver of Arsenal’s recent resurgence

But the former United star also claimed that the 21-year-old also had a similar style to Alexander Hleb, who also impressed in North London before leaving for Barcelona in 2008.

“He reminds me, with more final product it seems now and I think it will go to levels, his style is a bit Hleb,” added Ferdinand.

“ He plays low, similar socks, the way he moves and manipulates the ball can keep people off balance throughout the game. It has a bit of Hleb!

The 21-year-old's excellent form has earned him a first senior call-up for the England team.

The 21-year-old's excellent form has earned him a first senior call-up for the England team.

The 21-year-old’s excellent form has earned him a first senior call-up for the England team.

It has a bit of a Robert Pires vibe.

Arsenal turned down Aston Villa’s offers over the summer before tying Smith Rowe to a new five-year contract.

The midfielder has appeared in all but one of Arsenal’s games this season, and already has four league goals, including three in his previous three games.

Now that Arsenal are sixth in the table and looking ready to fight for a Champions League spot, Smith Rowe has been rewarded for his excellent start to the season with a call-up for the England team in place of Marcus Rashford.

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