Friday, May 20, 2022

Arteta talks ‘crucial’ Gabriel and blending his young defence

Mikel Arteta says a number of factors have contributed to the impressive form of defender Gabriel.

Despite picking up a knee injury that ruled him out of the Olympics and the start of the new Premier League campaign, the centre-back, when he finally regained full fitness, hit the ground running and has since established a very promising partnership with new signing Ben White.

The Brazilian hasn’t tasted defeat this season – a personal unbeaten streak that actually dates back to April across 12 matches in total.

“I think he’s been crucial,” said Arteta when asked about the player’s newfound importance.

“He came back from a knee injury that meant he missed all of pre-season but he came in a different way. He showed a new maturity, a different level of application. Again, his lifestyle has improved a lot. His language has improved a lot.

“He has all the qualities to be a superb central defender. I’m really pleased with what he’s doing.”

At 23, Gabriel, like his defensive cohorts Aaron Ramsdale, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Ben White and Kieran Tierney, still has age on his side. Assuming Arsenal can keep the players together and they continue to show an upturn in form, it bodes well for the future.

Asked about the way the five players have gelled since they came together in September, Arteta said: “It’s not easy but I think they all have the qualities to complement each other.

The cohesion between them is natural and they connect and they have all the right qualities for what we’re demanding them to do.

“And then they have to show the consistency. We’re just in October, there are still eight months to play. In the long run, we’ll see where we get to, but so far, I’m really pleased with them.

He added: “The potential is there [for them to play together for the next five years] because of the qualities that they have individually and how they can complement each other with those qualities. Obviously, the age group that we have there if we manage them well and they are willing to sustain that then they have a really bright future.”

Given the vastly different backgrounds of those making up his new-look backline – players from England, Scotland, Japan and Brazil – Arteta is delighted that communication hasn’t posed a problem.

“That’s the beauty of football, you have to connect different cultures, languages, ways of thinking and backgrounds because, for sure, they’ve all been coached in a different way.

“You have to link the pieces. I’m lucky because they are so willing to to learn, to understand and to try their best. And when that happens, it makes things a little bit easier.”

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Djouroureallylikeit

Have to say been very impressed by Gabi, he’s been brilliant so far.

Frank

He is Gabriel.
“Gabi” is Martinelli👩🏿‍🍳👨‍🌾

Sam I Am

They can both be Gabi. Arteta called him that the other day.

‘Av it

Gabigol & Gabinogoal.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Been a while since we’ve had a proper centre back. Gabriel is what we’ve needed for years

Johnny 4 Hats

Putting Willian aside, we have to give credit to Arteta and Edu. Ok, Cedric and Mari are a bit dodgy. But both are ok / fine.

But apart from this, we’ve had an amazing glut of talent, especially in defence but also midfield too with Partey, Sambi and Odegaard arriving.

Basically in two windows we’ve entirely reshaped our defence and midfield. No mean feat. And provided the trajectory we are currently on continues, we have to give these two inexperienced chaps some serious credit.

Havyn

Except against Palace where Gabriel was at fault for their first goal and Whyte the second goal

Graham

He’s not a robot. The key thing is that he learns from these mistakes and improves. Same for any of us.

Joy

You’ve a short memory. Palace goals were primarily a result of midfielders losing the ball in dangerous areas

Graeb

Keep it going Gabi, let’s hope we can keep the Vardy at bay for a change.

Side point: Anyone noticed that we’re in the midst of a 11 game televised run, which is more than any of the top-placed teams at present. TV looking for car crash results?

thw14

Transfer spending can buy you a little attention

TeeCee

Oh great. Next season will mean that colour TV is a waste of money then.

Ben

I think we have something special in the starters. I love the backups as well, Chambers, Holding, Turbo Nuno. I am thinking can we win premier league and champions league in 3 years? The Liverpool and City games will tell us. We have goals in us against any side for sure but can we hold Liverpool, City and PSG? I am looking forward to the near future.

Red-Wing

I like Turbo Nuno

T.A.

Undoubtedly one of our star players and his partnership with White is good. But I can’t help thinking that a partnership with Saliba might have been even better.

PeteyB

You might get your wish next year. I’m holding judgement on The Saliba Situation. Certain things were certainly handled poorly but he is performing well now, and still has time on his contract.
Id imagine in the summer coming one or two of Chambers, Holding and Mari will go. Saliba can come in and be the competition to White.

Laca New Signing

I’d take out Mari first. He’s useless.

Abhi

Our aim this season at the minimum is to qualify for the Europa League, which means many more games next season. We will need all three, Gabi, Saliba AND White to be firing, with Holding suitable emergency backup, to do well in the PL + Europe. We can’t go through a full season with just 2 centre backs. My hope of course is that Saliba chooses to stay and play for us, and there will be plenty of football for him to play, no doubt, next season if we achieve our goal during this one.

0o2Be

Cue the comments highlighting the fact that we need to get back in to Europe first, before we start to consider the future /s/. But seriously, this is a good point you make – especially considering that Saliba is a few years younger than White/Gabriel, if this works out then we could have a seriously decent & competitive central defense for quite a few years to come. That makes me excited.

Ben

The subject pics are not the same with the head line pics. I mean the size.

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