ALEX OXLADE-CHAMBERLAIN REVEALS HE WAS BULLIED BY EMMANUEL FRIMPONG AT ARSERNA.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has recounted a story of how we was bullied by former Arsenal star Emmanuel Frimpong prior to joining the Gunners.
The England international came through Southampton’s academy before switching to the Emirates as a 17-year-old.
The Ox revealed that at younger age groups he and his Saints team-mates would hate playing the Gunners.
‘That was the thing we all dreaded the most, was playing Arsenal at 10-years-old. We would turn up and they were 6ft 20in already. Chuks Aneke was just bullying me, Nico Yennaris was just bullying me – who else – Benik Afobe just scoring 20 goals a game. It was horrible,’ Oxlade-Chamberlain told the Arsenal podcast.
‘I remember under-9s, think we lost 12-1. Under 10s, again, we got pumped about 10 or 11-0.
‘At Under-11s my dad was the coach and we thought we’d cracked the code didn’t we. We went 2-0 up and we thought we’d cracked the code. We thought we’d cracked the Arsenal code and then we lost 12-2.’
However, as he and his team-mates began to develop the playing field levelled and Oxlade-Chamerlain recalls that at Under-14s they finally managed to win at Arsenal, beating them 3-2.
A few days later at a youth tournament Oxlade-Chamberlain and his team-mates came face-to-face with Arsenal again – or most specifically Frimpong – this time away from the pitch.
‘We were in the games room and I remember Arsenal bowled in and we were like ‘oh no’. It was like something from a film, we all just crumbled, ‘we’re going to get moved here’.
‘Emmanuel Frimpong burst through the door and it was the first time I’d come into contact with Frimmy. It was me and another lad on the Playstation and he came over and he’s like ‘what are you doing?’
‘We were like ‘yes Mr Frimpong, just playing on the Playstation’. He was like, ‘nah, get off’.
‘Frimmy’s looking like a grown man and I’m like so under-developed it’s untrue, I’m like a little boy. So I’m like ‘cool, here’s the Playstation’.
‘Then a couple of the other Arsenal boys were like ‘no Frimmy, they’re cool, leave them’. He was like ‘what do you mean they’re cool’ and they say ‘they beat us 3-2 last week’ and Frimmy was like ‘you let them beat you 3-2!?’.’
It seems that upon learning of Southampton’s recent win over Arsenal was enough to gain the respect of Frimpong.
‘Frimmy was like ‘ok cool, you can stay with us’. I was like, ‘boys, we’ve made it – the Arsenal boys think we’re the boys!’ We were buzzing.’
Oxlade-Chamberlain and Frimpong would go on to become team-mates at Arsenal for three years, however they played together little with the latter persistently sent out on loan before eventually signing for Barnsley in 2014.
He now plays for Russian side Arsenal Tula.
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