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Saliba Loan Isn’t The Mystery It’s Being Made Out to be

William Saliba, Arsenal

The potential of William Saliba is obvious to anyone who’s seen him play. He’s highly rated by many within the game and is expected to be a star in the Premier League when Saliba settles in at Arsenal and gains a regular first-team status.

So, why are Arsenal looking to loan out Saliba when supporters were expecting to see a central defensive partnership that would see the club through the next decade. Well, it’s not for financial reasons or to comply with the rules regarding the numbers of foreign players in a squad. Arsenal are supporting the 19-year-old after the tragic loss of his mother in May.

Arteta now feels that he has to handle the massive expectations that surround the player and allow him some time to grieve without the additional pressures of playing in the Premier League. It’s been a difficult transition for the central defender since he departed from St Etienne, adjusting to a new team, new country, and new surroundings and his mother’s death has had an understandable impact on his life.

Plus with Arsenal making significant additions to their team this summer, chances of him featuring consistently would always be a difficult scenario but from the clubs point of view, major platforms like Olybet website have started offering significant odds on Arsenal finishing within the top-four this season because of robust transfer market dealings.

Saliba, Arsenal
(Photo by FredericChambert/Panoramic via Imago Images)

Arsenal were looking at sending Saliba home on loan, initially, that was to St Etienne or Rennes, but it could now be to Championship side Brentford because of the club’s close ties. Brentford are a decent attacking side who play expressive football and Saliba would certainly be a good fit in terms of his football education. Let’s not forget that the Frenchman is only 19 and for him to reach his potential, he will need sound advice, guidance, and support.

Arsenal have had a habit in the past of mismanaging young talent such as Konstantinos Mavropanos, who, at 22 years of age, is seemingly at the crossroads of his Arsenal career. Mavropanos was seen as the next big thing and a possible answer to part of Arsenal’s defensive problems but with few opportunities, he wasn’t able to establish himself and his confidence ebbed away.

The coaching staff are still hopeful that he will find his feet with regular game time and become the player that everyone thought he would be. However, at the moment, he is with VfB Stuttgart, the second of two back-to-back loan spells, the first was with FC Nürnberg.

It appears that Arsenal’s coaching staff have had a serious rethink on how they handle their youngsters and Arteta in particular, is keen to avoid past mistakes. So, what’s different about Gabriel?

Gabriel Magalhaes is also a young player (22), but it appears that he has a stronger mentality at this moment in time. He was very much a feature of the Lille squad, Dinamo Zagreb, and has appeared for the Brazilian National side. This has instilled deep-rooted confidence which is evident in his performances. Arteta will get the best out of his young players but he is not in a rush to satisfy the needs of fans at the expense of the club’s progress.

The loan deal could be the best option for Saliba at the moment and if given time, I’m convinced that we will see the best of him within a season or so. Arteta currently has options in defence, unlike when he first arrived at the Emirates and he can now afford to give players the time they need to reach their potential.

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The Highbury Flyer
Anti Kroenke , anti Gazidis but always a gooner. Still wishes he could watch from the stands at the Highbury library.

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