Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Mikel Arteta reveals fears over William Saliba relationship following “damage” claim

Mikel Arteta reveals fears over William Saliba relationship following “damage” claim

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has admitted that he is concerned about the state of his relationship with William Saliba ahead of the Frenchman’s first full season with the club.

The Gunners signed Saliba in the summer of 2019, while Arteta’s predecessor, Unai Emery, was still in charge.

While the young defender was never expected to break into the first team, few could have predicted he’d have three separate loan spells back to different French clubs.

But that’s exactly what happened, prompting some to speculate that there may be a schism between Saliba and Arteta as a result of the former feeling let down by the fact that he wasn’t given a chance to play first-team football at the Emirates for three years after joining.

The Gunners manager has since admitted that he was concerned about the state of his relationship with Saliba, but has since been proven wrong and is pleased with how committed the defender is to the cause after a fantastic start to the season.

“I was really impressed and surprised when I spoke to him,” Arteta explained. “The way the relationship started, [I wondered] if there was damage there because he had certain expectations. But he was so committed just to play for Arsenal.

“If I look at how he talks about the club and how much he wants to be here, I have no doubts that he wants to continue to be here.”

Arteta’s comments come at a time when speculation about Saliba’s future is heating up, given how quickly he has adapted to the rigors of the Premier League.

Saliba, in fact, has been the Gunners’ standout performer this season. Excellent performances against the likes of Harry Kane and Aleksandar Mitrovic have increased the desire at the top of the Arsenal hierarchy to try and extend the centre-contract. back’s

His current contract expires in two years, putting the club in a difficult position where they must choose between accepting a high offer from elsewhere or risk losing Saliba for free the following year.

Mikel Arteta reveals fears over William Saliba relationship following “damage” claim

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