Folarin Balogun, currently on loan at Reims from Arsenal, has stated that he is solely focused on his time with the French club rather than his future with the Gunners. The 21-year-old joined Arsenal at the age of eight and signed his first professional contract in 2019, which was extended until June 2025. However, with just ten first-team appearances and two goals to his name, Balogun is under pressure to prove to Arsenal that he can lead their line in the future. Despite this, he has revealed that he is only thinking about ending the season on a high with Reims rather than what will happen when he returns to north London.
Balogun has been in fine form in Ligue 1 this season following his half-season loan with Championship side Middlesbrough last campaign. He currently has the second-highest scoring record in Ligue 1 this season with a tally of 17, the same number as ex-Gunners striker Alexandre Lacazette for Lyon and Wissam Ben Yedder of Monaco. Only Lille’s Jonathan David and Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappe have more, both sharing top spot on 19. Balogun’s tally has even bettered Lionel Messi’s this season, with the PSG star lagging behind on 13 league goals. He is also the youngest player to hit 17 goals in their debut season in France’s top flight since 1956.
Despite his success, Balogun insists that he is not focused on the scoring charts but is instead focused on helping Reims finish as high up the table as possible. He stated that it would be “very fickle” to think that having more goals than Messi or Neymar means anything, as the season is not finished yet.
Arsenal striker Gabriel Jesus’s injury at the World Cup highlighted how thin Mikel Arteta’s squad was when it came to options up top, with Eddie Nketiah the only player available to step up to the plate. However, with Leandro Trossard now in the picture, it is unclear what the future holds for Balogun.
Balogun’s return this season is much improved on his three goals for Boro in the second half of last season. His performances have sent shockwaves across the channel, not just because of his cryptic Instagram post after not getting an England call-up. Balogun joined Arsenal at a young age and has been with the club for many years. However, he is now focused on making an impact at Reims and showing what he can do on the pitch.
In conclusion, Folarin Balogun is currently on loan at Reims from Arsenal and is solely focused on his time with the French club rather than his future with the Gunners. He has been in fine form in Ligue 1 this season and currently has the second-highest scoring record in the league. Despite his success, Balogun insists that he is not focused on the scoring charts but is instead focused on helping Reims finish as high up the table as possible.