Danny Welbeck: Player Profile

Golden Chance To Take Centre Stage For England

Personal information 
Full name:
 Daniel Nii Tackie Mensah Welbeck
Date of birth: 
26 November 1990
Age: 23 
Place of birth:
 Longsight, Manchester, England 
1.84 m (6 ft 0 in) 
Playing position: 

Club information
Current team:

Youth career 2001–2008: Manchester United

Senior career 2008–2014: Manchester United 142 Appearances, 29 goals
2010 → Preston North End (loan) 8 Appearances, 2 goals
2010–2011 → Sunderland (loan) 28 Appearances, 6 goals
2014– Arsenal 6 Appearances, 4 goals

National team2006–2007: England U17 11 Appearances, 2 goals 
2007–2008: England U18 2 Appearances, 2 goals 
2008–2009: England U19 8 Appearances, 2 goals 
2009–2011: England U21 14 Appearances, 5 goals 
2011– England 28 Appearances, 10 goals 

Danny Welbeck has a golden chance to take centre stage for Arsenal and England. Welbeck has a wonderful opportunity opening up over the next few weeks. 

It’s very unfortunate that Olivier Giroud is injured for Arsenal and Daniel Sturridge is out for England. But for Welbeck, these circumstances have presented him with the chance to establish his credentials. The England international joined Arsenal in September 2014. 

The 23-year-old joined from Manchester United, where he made a total of 142 appearances, scoring 29 goals. Welbeck, who can play as a centre forward or a winger, developed through the youth ranks at Old Trafford. 

Making his senior England debut in March 2011, Welbeck was in the England squads for both Euro 2012 and the 2014 World Cup.

For both club and country, it is all finally coming together for the 23-year-old striker. His hat-trick against Galatasaray showed that he is absolutely making the most of the chance given to him. 

Welbeck’s Champions League performance was very different from the past. Then, when he had time to linger on a chance, he seemed to struggle. This time around he was clinical even when he had time to think. Part of that is clearly his confidence. 

He has a manager who believes in him and he is responding. But it’s also because he’s playing in better areas that are suited to his game. The England international runs off the back of defenders and stretches teams with his pace. 

He couldn’t do that on the flanks at Manchester United. Wide players do so much work they are almost like full-backs and because he is so hard-working and disciplined, he covered miles in that shift. The downside of such honesty is that he is not in the areas where he is most dangerous. 

Now he’s making darting runs in areas of the pitch that hurt the opposition. Welbeck suits Arsenal’s style as he gives Arsenal another dimension. 

He also did well down the centre for England against Switzerland last month by scoring twice and now he has two games coming up against San Marino and Estonia, when you would expect him to score more goals. By the time he comes back from international duty, his confidence should be sky-high.

Welbeck’s work rate is exemplary. When required, he has no hesitation about dropping into midfield to fill in for team-mates. He holds the ball up well, and his passing is consistently accurate. Crucially, he’s quick. 

Welbeck is able to stretch defences with his speed, and he pairs his athleticism with astute decision-making. It’s not just how fast his runs are, it’s how smart they are, too. Welbeck plays with the footballing intelligence you’d expect of a player whose skills have been honed at Manchester United’s fabled academy. 

Born in Longsight, Manchester, to Ghanaian parents, Welbeck was first spotted by Manchester United as a six-year-old. At eight years old, he impressed with local side Fletcher Moss, and was finally picked up by the Manchester United youth academy. 

The major criticism of his game has been his lack of composure in front of goal. However, Welbeck has delivered a marvellous showcase of his finishing ability by scoring four goals in six appearances for Arsenal. 

After Welbeck’s blistering performance against Galatasaray, he earned a few murmured comparisons with Thierry Henry. At this stage, that’s hugely premature. This was an example of how good Welbeck can be, but he needs to improve if he is to deliver this kind of grandstand performance more regularly.

At just 23 years old, there is still plenty of time for Welbeck to make good on the undeniable potential he showcased from an early age. He burst onto the scene at United as a 17-year-old, scoring a stunning goal against Stoke City during his first Premier League game. 

Loan spells at Preston North End and Sunderland followed that blistering introduction, and Welbeck flourished as the front man during his time up on Wearside, suggesting he could return to United and potentially play a major part. 

But he failed to nail down a regular spot in the Red Devils first team and was reportedly told that he was surplus to requirements by Louis van Gaal. Welbeck now has an opportunity to make a name for himself after being a key figure for Roy Hodgson’s England setup, despite his lack of action at club level. 

It is to Welbeck's credit that he has left his dream club to further his career, and both his club and country could benefit from his move.