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Mikel Arteta responds to William Saliba/Virgil van Dijk comparisons

The Gunners boss has urged his young defender to be ‘Saliba, no one else’

Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta has, on Friday, responded to questions regarding the possibility of star stopper William Saliba reaching the level of Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk.

The subject of the respective defenders’ talents was brought to the fore earlier this afternoon.

This of course comes with Arsenal set to play host to Jurgen Klopp’s troops this weekend, in an another early season litmus test when it comes to the Gunners’ Premier League title credentials.

The aforementioned Saliba, for his part, is expected to be afforded his latest start in the Emirates clash, having been afforded a timely rest in midweek.

This comes with the French international having proven one of the breakout performers of the English top-flight campaign to date, on the back of his long-awaited return to base in north London over the summer.

Speaking to the expectant media on Friday, it therefore came as little surprise when the subject of Saliba’s talents was put to Mikel Arteta once more.

Arteta, though, was keen to play the subject down.

‘Wow, that’s a big question,’ the Arsenal boss began. ‘I’m really happy with where he is at the moment.’

‘He’s Saliba, he’s no one else, and he needs to make his own career,’ Arteta concluded.

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Conor Laird

Die-hard Juventus fan with a love for all things Italian, and a real soft spot for Arsenal cult heroes. Emmanuel Eboue, Nicklas Bendtner, Philippe Senderos... Give them all statues outside the Emirates.

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