Arsene Wenger believes that German international Per Mertesacker is growing in stature game-by-game as he comes to terms with the pace of life in the Premier League.
The 26-year-old centre-back has been praised for his no-nonsense approach to defending since arriving in August and cut a consistent figure in a side which has had to cope with injuries to Thomas Vermaelen, Johan Djourou, Laurent Koscileny and Sebastien Squillaci.
Despite the challenging circumstances, and having admitted recently that he has yet to fully settle in London, the player still appears to have impressed his new coach.
“I think he’s a player who is strong in every game, he is a calming influence and reads the game well,” Wenger told Arsenal Player.
“He plays it simple and is slowly growing in stature in the team. He is adjusting to the pace of the game, that was the big change for him.
“Overall I am happy with him. I think we will see him getting stronger and stronger now.”