Saliba’s Arsenal struggles
Arsenal secured Williams Saliba’s services in the summer of 2019. The Gunners are believed to have forked over around £27m for the centre-back.
Despite the hefty fee, however, Arsenal are yet to hand Saliba a senior appearance.
Last season saw the young stopper loaned back to St Etienne. Then, after returning to north London over the summer, Saliba saw his opportunities limited.
The Frenchman was left out of Arsenal’s Europa League squad, an odd decision when considering the Gunners were drawn in a fairly weak group, featuring sides whom Saliba definitely could have earned some minutes against.
Mikel Arteta, at the time, stated that he felt ‘bad’ for Saliba:
“I feel really bad for William Saliba. Because we had so many central defenders, we decided to leave him out of the squad which was really hurtful for me to do.”
Nevertheless, though, over the opening half of the campaign, Arteta did not hand his young stopper a single senior appearance in any competition, with the 19-year-old instead limited to action at under-23 level.
Saliba impressing with Nice
This eventually led to Saliba departing the Emirates on loan during the winter window:
🗞 William Saliba has joined Ligue 1 side Nice on loan for the remainder of the season
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) January 4, 2021
And, since joining Nice, he has gone on to impress with the French outfit.
Nice do struggle to keep clean sheets, but Saliba’s individual displays have been pretty promising on the whole.
The teen was even voted Les Aiglons’ Player of the Month for January.
And now, on the back of his side’s latest win over Rennes, an impressive statistic surrounding the Arsenal loanee’s form has come to light.
As per Squawka, Saliba has played 10 games for Nice since joining the club on loan, with no opposition player yet to successfully dribble past him.
William Saliba has now played 10 games for Nice since joining on loan from Arsenal in January and no opposition player has successfully dribbled past him. ⛔️ pic.twitter.com/6YdXM9rAus
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) February 26, 2021
This article was edited by Conor Laird.
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