Monday, February 26, 2024

Wenger: It’s important to keep our young defenders

Arsene Wenger says it’s important that Arsenal keep hold of their young centre-backs after handing Calum Chambers a new two-year deal at the Emirates.

Arsenal appeared willing to sell Chambers this summer before the boss had a change of heart even turning down a bid of £20 million from Leicester in August. A new contract not only gives the player, currently injured, a chance to reinvigorate his Gunners career and protects the club’s investment.

Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s games with Watford on Saturday evening, Wenger noted: “He’s a young centre-back and he’s going towards his best period now.

“He’s played a complete season at Middlesbrough, unfortunately, he’s injured at the moment.

“I believe that it’s important we keep our young centre-backs because they blossom at 24.

“It’s important to keep them during that period.”

The 22-year-old’s £16 million price-tag raised eyebrows when he moved to the Emirates from Southamption in 2014, however, after an instant impact helping the Gunners traverse a tricky Champions League qualifier with Besiktas he went on to enjoy an impressive first season making 36 appearances.

Chambers’ second season proved more tricky and, faced with more competition for places, he featured only 25 times, often as a back-up right-back. Last summer the decision was taken to send him on loan to Middlesbrough. He made 26 appearances at the Riverside and earned plaudits for his performances despite suffering relegation.

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Makes sense, he played 23 PL games for us in 2014-15 so great experience for one so young.

Most defenders are at their best from 25 onwards, so he has a lot of potential improvement. Fingers crossed.

Capn Crunch

I do have to admit that Wenger has definitely improved the age balance of the squad in recent years. After the ridiculously young team during the austerity period, I feel like we now have a much better distribution. The over 30s lot who have been with us long enough to understand the clubs philosophy and bring experience to the changing room (BFG, cazorla, koscielny, giroud) Those who have settled in the league and are currently at/heading toward their peak age (Ozil, Sanchez, Ramsey, xhaka, Welbeck, Lacazette soon) The young ones who are still developing but preparing to take over (Iwobi,… Read more »


you can remove Bellerin as he’ll prob be off to Barcelona if not next summer, the summer after next

Gudang Bedil

I do think that he will be a fit for three in the back. He and Holding can be our chamber holder for the future.

Andy Mack

Why do so many ‘fans’ take any notice when the media suggests ” Arsenal appear willing to sell”?
No proof needed, then appears on forums etc and a rumour suddenly turns into a fact the simple minded believe is a forgone conclusion…

Crash Fistfight

How many times are we playing Watford on Saturday evening?

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