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Marseille boss raves about Arsenal loanee who Arteta never started

Marseille boss raves about Arsenal loanee who Arteta never started
Photo: AFP via Getty

Marseille coach Jorge Sampaoli is cherishing every bit of William Saliba at his club. The Arsenal loanee has helped the Ligue 1 side secure a second spot in the points table this season.

The Gunners roped him in from Saint-Etienne in the summer of 2019. He was a fan-favourite and no one had expected that the club would keep him benched most of the time. The 20-year-old was then loaned back to Saint-Etienne where he managed to reach the French Cup final.

Last summer, the defender returned to the Emirates Stadium only to move to Nice. During the 2020/21 season, Saliba got to hone his skills in 22 competitive appearances.

He was then loaned back to Marseille where he has become a regular starter. So far, he has played the full 90 minutes in five Ligue 1 matches under Jorge Sampaoli.

The Marseille boss was in awe of Saliba’s skills at defence. “He’s a top player at his position. We were lucky to get him on loan, it wasn’t simple,” he said. “He’s great at marking, but good bringing the ball out too – he’s a future great of French football, he’s very good at starting plays. He’s adapted to a three at the back well, and his performances are linked to the team’s, which likes to play from the back.”

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