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Marseille star Dimitri Payet the latest to question Arsenal’s treatment of William Saliba

Dimitri Payet after the Europa League final

Saliba’s confusing Arsenal stint

William Saliba, a″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>27 million pound

 signing from French outfit Saint-Etienne, is yet to play a minute of senior football for Arsenal, since arriving in 2019.

In a somewhat bizarre transfer story, Saliba has spent the last three seasons on loan in Ligue 1, with three different clubs, all whilst not playing a single minute for Arsenal’s senior side.

Following stints with Saint-Etienne and OGC Nice, the defender has since joined Marseille for the 2021-22 season, and has been quick to impress. In their opening eight games, he has helped limit the goals conceded to just ten, which has resulted in OM reaching fifth place in the Ligue 1 table at the early stages.

Still only 20 years old, he is very much learning his trade, but with the addition of Ben White to Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal squad, fans are questioning where the youngster fits into the North London club’s plans after he was sent on loan once more, with many thinking he should have chosen to gain Premier League experience.

However, transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has reiterated that the defender remains “100%… the future of Arsenal”, saying:

“Arsenal are following William Saliba’s performance with Marseille, they are very happy with him. The club told him several weeks ago that they were counting 100% on him for the future of Arsenal.” 

Payet the latest to question the decision

Despite the ringing endorsement, question marks still remain.

Former Premier League star Dimitri Payet has become the latest to raise them. In an interview with L’Equipe, he was asked who impressed him the most in the Marseille squad, and replied:

‘The new ones have all brought something different. After that, I am closer to younger players.

‘So, the one that impresses me the most is “Willie” (Saliba).

‘Considering what he’s been doing since the start of the season, I don’t understand why he hasn’t played more for Arsenal.’

While this may seem frustrating for Arsenal fans to hear, should it persist and Saliba is indeed the future of Arsenal, next season will be greeted with excitement. Will the Frenchman finally be given a stint in north London?

Read more:

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Chelsea FC 14 27 33
2 Manchester City 14 21 32
3 Liverpool FC 14 31 31
4 West Ham United 14 8 24
5 Arsenal FC 14 -3 23
6 Tottenham Hotspur 13 -4 22
7 Manchester United 14 0 21
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 14 0 21
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 14 -2 19
10 Leicester City 14 -3 19
11 Crystal Palace 14 -1 16
12 Brentford FC 14 -2 16
13 Aston Villa 14 -4 16
14 Everton FC 14 -7 15
15 Leeds United 14 -7 15
16 Southampton FC 14 -7 15
17 Watford FC 14 -7 13
18 Burnley FC 13 -6 10
19 Norwich City 14 -20 10
20 Newcastle United 14 -14 7

Premier League 21/22

Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 13
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 8
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 7
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 6
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 6
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 6
Raphinha Leeds United 6
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 5
King, Joshua Watford FC 5
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 5
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 5
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 5
Silva, Bernardo Manchester City 5
Pukki, Teemu Norwich City 5
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United 5
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 5
Cornet, Maxwel Burnley FC 5
Sarr, Ismaila Watford FC 5
James, Reece Chelsea FC 4