With every new season, it’s understandable that fans are extra keen to watch the latest signings in action. Much has been spoken about impressive debuts by Willian and Gabriel but we have yet to see towering centre back, William Saliba, in a competitive match.
Expectations are high because of the £28m we paid Saint-Etienne, as well as the fact fans have waited over a year to watch the promising youngster in Arsenal colours.
In the press conference leading up to Wednesday’s Carabao Cup game against Leicester City, Arteta was quick to stress that what happens in the short-term is no reflection on the 19 year old.
“I think William is doing really well, adapting to the country, adapting to our club, and we have to bear in mind that he had a really challenging season last year with the amount of injuries that that he had,” said Arteta.
“He is going to be really important in our future and things sometimes take some time. And we have to respect that.”
Saliba has time on his side, and time away from the limelight might be well spent learning from some of the experienced heads in the first team. David Luiz, for one, is seen as a mentor for many of the younger players in the squad, the young Frenchman included.
“I think David is a really good role model for them – for who David is as a person and as a player and everything that he has achieved in the game.
“I think they are lucky to have him around,” claimed Arteta.
Much has been said about Luiz’s leadership qualities and we can only hope that any wisdom shared can help Saliba settle much more quickly on and off the pitch.