Luiz ideal ‘role model’ for Saliba
William Saliba and Arsenal’s other young defenders are lucky to have David Luiz to learn from, Mikel Arteta has said.
The Arsenal manager believes Luiz is the ideal “role model” for the likes of Saliba, 19, who is likely to make his competitive debut against Leicester City in the Carabao Cup tonight. Saliba was signed for £25million in the summer of 2019, but was subsequently loaned back to St-Etienne for the season.
“I think he [Luiz] is a really good role model for them,” said Arteta. “For who David is as a person and as a player and everything he has achieved in the game, I think they are lucky to have him around.”
On Saliba’s lack of first-team action so far, Arteta added: “I think William is doing really well. He is adapting to the country, adapting to our club. We have to bear in mind that he had a really challenging season last year with the amount of injuries that he had.”
Arteta, who won back-to-back league cups as part of Manchester City’s coaching team, has promised to field his “strongest possible team”.
Arsenal have competition from a Champions League club in the race for French midfielder Houssem Aouar, who will wait before making a decision on his future.
Lyon director Juninho confirmed last week that Arteta was an admirer of the player, 22, and the Ligue 1 club are braced for bids in the final two weeks of the summer transfer window.