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Profile: An in-depth look at Chris Willock

WE take a closer look at new QPR signing Chris Willock, who joins the club from Benfica.

Born and raised in the east end of London, pacey winger Chris Willock joined Premier League giants Arsenal at the tender age of five, making his professional debut at 16.

Willock quickly made a name for himself in the youth setup at the Emirates with current QPR first-team coach Neil Banfield playing a key role in his development with the Gunners.

After making his first start for Arsène Wenger’s side in a pre-season friendly, Willock was handed his first-team debut in the League Cup against Nottingham Forest.

The French boss praised the youngster at the time, stating: “He is a very interesting player, technically and tactically he is very good and will do well.”

This rapid rise alerted many top sides, with Portuguese champions Benfica quick to snap up the teenager.

The now England Under-20 international became a key part of Benfica’s B side, making 64 appearances, scoring 14 times and clocking up nine assists.

During this spell, Willock linked up with former R’s star Adel Taarabt who has been quick to praise the young winger.

Throughout his career, Willock has been a mainstay for England’s younger groups, making 47 appearances for the young Lions.

Most noticeably, he impressed for England’s U17s at the European Championships in 2015. This form resulted in Willock being named in the Team of the Tournament.

Willock joined West Brom on loan at the start of last season before switching to Huddersfield Town in January where he enjoyed a successful spell with the Championship side, making 14 appearances and scoring two goals for the Terriers.

Chris comes from a huge footballing background with both his brothers playing professionally.

Joe, who is Chris’ younger brother, is currently still at Arsenal, whilst older sibling Matty is plying his trade with League One club Gillingham.

Upon returning to the UK from Portugal earlier this week, Willock undertook a Covid-19 test and it has since returned a negative result. He is now able to begin training with his new teammates at Harlington. 

Welcome, Chris!