Arsenal: Arteta says Saka 'always willing to learn'
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Arsenal’s board are ‘in love’ Bukayo Saka, according to reports. The teenager has been in fine form in the Premier League this season, emerging as a shining light amid a problematic campaign. Yet he’s been linked with a move away ahead of the summer transfer window.
Arsenal were thumped 3-0 by Liverpool on Saturday night in a defeat that leaves their hopes of a Premier League top four finish lying by a thread.
And their decision to leave Saka on the bench backfired spectacularly on a disappointing night at the Emirates Stadium.
It was reported on Friday that the 19-year-old, who has scored five goals and registered two assists from 25 Premier League matches, could be sold this summer.
Arsenal need to balance the books in the wake of the coronavirus crisis and, with Martin Odegaard their leading target, Saka could be shown the door.
But journalist Fabrizio Romano has now downplayed talk over the teenager potentially leaving the club by saying the Arsenal board ‘love him’.
A fan asked: “Could Arsenal sell Saka?????”
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And Romano responded by saying: “The word is in love with Saka!”
That suggests Arsenal fans shouldn’t be concerned about Saka leaving the club, despite the obvious links to the likes of Manchester United and Chelsea.
And he’s instead primed to play a vital role in the club’s future as they look to win the Premier League title for the first time since 2004, back when Arsene Wenger was in charge.
Meanwhile, speaking recently, former Arsenal star Ray Parlour hailed Saka and expressed a belief he should be in England’s squad for the upcoming European Championships.
“He’s certainly up there. Teenagers wise, he probably is (the best),” Parlour told talkSPORT Breakfast.
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“Foden is 20 but he’s different class as well. We’ve got so many good players coming through.
“It’s a good problem to have as you’re going into a Euro Championships knowing you’ve got so much quality.
“He’s just got to get the right balance now. He’s got to get the right team selection and it’s down to Gareth to say ‘what system am I going to play?’ And to get the best out of the players.
“That’s what he’s got to try and find out but Saka has certainly been superb this season.”
Former West Ham and Manchester City star Trevor Sinclair agreed, believing the Gunners youngster was ‘like a sponge’.
“The amount of improvements he’s made has been incredible. I remember hearing Gareth Southgate talking about him saying he’s such a clever player on and off the pitch,” he added.
“He’s like a sponge as any information he takes it on board and executes it.
“I think he’s player of the season for Arsenal for sure. His assists last night were second to none.
“He’s got to go to the Euros because he’s so adaptable. He can play in different positions – you can put him on the right, on the left, you put him at full-back.
“At that age, to be able to adapt so easily to different positions takes a certain amount of genius.”
Arteta, meanwhile, apologised to Arsenal fans after the Liverpool defeat.
“We completely deserved to lose the game,” he said.
“They were better in every department and deserved to win the game with the margin they had, or even more. I accept responsibility for the way we played today.
“Liverpool completely deserved to win the game, probably by a bigger margin. We were extremely poor. We apologise.
“They made the right decisions, we didn’t. It is my fault. I have to set the team up to perform in a different way and that is it. Congratulations to Liverpool because they were exceptional today. That showed the difference between the two teams – that when they play at that level, the margin is incredibly high.”
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