Newcastle loanee Joe Willock admits he will have to make a decision on returning to Arsenal or leaving for good at the end of the season as he says he’s ‘loving every minute’ at St James’ Park
- Joe Willock has said he will consider his future at Arsenal in the summer
- The 21-year-old joined Newcastle until the end of the season on deadline day
- Willock scored on his debut in Newcastle’s 3-2 win over Southampton last week
Joe Willock has revealed he is loving life at Newcastle and admits he has a big decision to make on his Arsenal future at the end of the season.
The 21-year-old midfielder joined Newcastle on loan from the Gunners until the end of the season in a deadline day move, and made the perfect start as he scored on his debut in a 3-2 win over Southampton.
And while his long-term future back at Arsenal may be uncertain, Willock insists it’s not something he will think about until his loan spell is finished.
Joe Willock scored on his Newcastle debut last week in a 3-2 win over Southampton
‘I’m trying to focus on what I have to do now, focus on Newcastle. I’m not really looking at Arsenal at the moment,’ he told Sky Sports.
‘I’m here to prove to Newcastle United that I can play every week and affect the games and win games for them.
‘I’m not really looking at Arsenal, when that time comes for me to make a decision to go back or not that will come but right now, I’m focused on Newcastle and I’m loving every minute that I’m here.’
Willock, who has represented England at Under-21 level, made just two Premier League starts under Mikel Arteta this season, despite impressing in the Europa League group stages.
The midfielder has said he will have to consider his long-term Arsenal future in the summer
He scored three goals in four starts in Europe, and he has immediately found his goalscoring touch at St James’ Park.
‘I wanted to make a good start, I wanted to score, I wanted to get the three points and when the whistle went, I knew I’d done that,’ Willock said.
‘When I scored, it was a brilliant feeling. I wish the fans were there for me to do a knee slide and run in front of the crowd but I couldn’t do it so I celebrated with the team.
‘When I came in, I wanted to help the team have that bit of pace in midfield, travel from one box to the other quicker and get it to the front men quicker, and arrive in the box and score goals like I did, so I feel I can add that to the team and hopefully it continues.’
Willock’s loan move is the first time he has been away from Arsenal since he joined the club at the age of four, with his brothers Chris and Matty, now playing at QPR and Gillingham respectively, also coming through Arsenal’s Hale End Academy.
Willock has revealed his new team-mates have already made him feel at home at Newcastle
And the midfielder has praised his team-mates for helping him settle into his new surroundings and his new boss Steve Bruce for allowing him to express his attacking instincts.
‘He (Steve Bruce) said to me, “I know that’s your quality, I know that’s what you love to do, I give you the freedom to go, and don’t worry, there are players behind you that can back you up”,’ Willock said.
‘When I decided to come here I had a sense of peace, I didn’t ever feel like it was going to be the wrong one (decision). When I came here, everyone was so welcoming.
‘My first day everyone was speaking to me, I was speaking to the manager, that was when I knew it was the right decision and to score on my debut and to get three points is an even bigger plus.’
The 21-year-old spoke of how Steve Bruce has given him the freedom to get forward and attack
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