Oli Arblaster: A Sheffield United star in the making scores for England’s U20’s

The Sheffield United academy has produced some absolutely fantastic players that have gone on to play for England over the years; the likes of Kyle Walker, Harry Maguire, and Phil Jagielka.

And the Blades may well have produced the next England star in 19-year-old midfielder Oli Arblaster. The boyhood Blade was recently handed his full Premier League debut against Bournemouth by Chris Wilder, and he very nearly found himself on the scoresheet.

The Sheffield United academy graduate seamlessly filled in for Vinicius Souza, displaying a remarkable comfort in the Premier League midfield.

Arblaster showcased his adeptness on the ball, exuding calmness and contributing diligently in defensive duties. Notably, he emerged as United’s most precise passer, boasting an impressive 81% accuracy rate, as per SofaScore.

His Premier League debut was nothing short of impressive, highlighted by a thrilling moment in the 64th minute. Evading the Bournemouth defence with skillful dribbling, he unleashed a powerful shot towards the far bottom corner, only to be denied by the goalkeeper’s fingertip save.

Arblaster scores for England’s Youth team

It’s been a crazy few weeks for Arblaster after pledging his long-term future to the Blades, being given his Premier League debut by Wilder, and as a result for his performance he was rewarded with a call-up to England’s youth team.

This was Arblasters’s sixth appearance for the England U20’s Elite squad, and he celebrated this feat with an outstanding goal against Czech Republic.

Oli Arblaster: A Sheffield United star in the making

For the last few years, regular viewer’s of the Sheffield United youth team’s have known about Arblaster for a while.

The youngster has been pulling the strings for the development team for a long time, and has been a big reason for United’s U21’s recent success.

Across 2020/21 to the 2022/23 campaign, the Blades finished first in the Professional Development League, Northern Group, highlighting just how much talent Sheffield United have in their youth ranks.

His form within the youth ranks earned him a first professional loan move last summer as Port Vale temporarily acquired his services. Instantly, the Vale fans were in awe of Arblaster’s composure and his ability in the middle of the park.

After accumulating 26 appearances in all competitions for Port Vale, in which he added two goals and two assists, the young midfielder suffered a nasty injury in a cup game against Middlesbrough. Ultimately this cut his loan spell with the League One side short.

Nevertheless, his injury certainly hasn’t hampered his progression. In fact, he seems to have kicked on even more, and now some fans are thinking Arblaster should be one of the first names on the team sheet come next August.

My view

Much like his teammate and fellow boyhood Blade Andre Brooks, Arblaster seemed to have improved the dynamic of the Sheffield United team in the little appearances he’s made in the Premier League.

The duo undoubtedly increase the athleticism in midfield, a major weakness within the team throughout this poor campaign.

I can see a scenario where Arblaster is a key component in Sheffield United’s midfield next season, and he will more than likely be playing with Gustavo Hamer and Tom Davies.

Tags Development team Oli Arblaster