Arsenal given backing over summer transfer decision despite fan disappointment

Former Arsenal full-back Bacary Sagna agrees with how the Gunners have dealt with William Saliba, despite disappointment from some supporters.

The French defender has seen no action following his £27million move from Saint-Etienne in 2019, yet to register a single senior appearance.

Saliba spent his first season back on loan at Saint-Etienne, as initially agreed, and he has spent this season out on a temporary spell with Ligue 1 side Nice.

But still only 20 years of age, that’s all part of a very normal process, according to former Gunners full-back Sagna, who spent around seven years in north London.

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“I am not surprised (he has not played for Arsenal yet) because he went to the world’s best league. Being good in France is completely different from proving yourself in the Premier League,” Sagna told Goal.

“But I still trust him, I think he is a good player and he can adapt to Arsenal because I have seen him play many times.

“He plays well in Nice and has probably been their best player. At that age, you have to play. He has great potential and in France, people know that.

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“Loaning him is not a bad thing, it is not a punishment. For me, it is smart to send him (on loan) rather than him sitting on the bench or not even in the squad.”

Saliba has made 14 appearances for Nice this season as he attempts to impress Mikel Arteta from afar ahead of next season, when Arsenal might need another centre-back given David Luiz’s unresolved contract issues.

Luiz’s deal comes to an end at the end of this season and there has been no movement just yet, though there have been some suggestions the veteran will get a one-year extension before the season is up.

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