Saturday, June 22, 2024

Arteta hails quiet but confident Saliba, Klopp lavishes praise on Gunners

Eight games into the new season and people are starting to mention Virgil van Dijk and William Saliba in the same breath.

Clearly, such talk is ridiculous.

For anyone who has watched Saliba knows all too well that he’s twice the player the Dutchman ever was.

*Badum tish*

Okay, okay…that’s a bit OTT but it says a lot about the Frenchman’s impressive start that his manager is already being quizzed on such comparisons.

When it was put to Arteta that Saliba can hit the same heights as Van Dijk – someone whose wikipedia page lists 23 individual awards in the last decade – the boss was a little taken aback.

“Wow, that’s a big call,” he said ahead of Sunday’s clash with Liverpool.

“We’re very happy with where he is at the moment. He’s Saliba: he’s no one else, and he needs to make his own career.

He added: “I think the way he has established himself, the composure and leadership that he’s shown on the pitch – it’s done in a very natural way without any flashlights, just being himself. Being very quiet but at the same time, very confident.”

Having coped admirably with the challenge posed by Harry Kane and Son Heung-Min in last weekend’s derby, Saliba now gets to test himself against a Reds front line (even devoid of Sadio Mane) that have been every bit as potent in the last five years.

It’s going to be a mouthwatering showdown.

For his part, Jurgen Klopp has been very impressed by Arsenal this season. From the development of some of the young players to the way new signings have hit the ground running, he gave a glowing report on Friday.

“All my respect, wow. Really, really good job. When you need some time nobody wants to give you time and maybe not all of us deserve time, because you still have to be good to use the time – and that’s what Mikel obviously did.

“I have to say, really lots of respect for it. They had a lot of talent already in the last few years. Martinelli, I was very early excited about him and he became exactly the player I expected he will be.

“Martin Odegaard, I spoke to him when he was 15 from Norway when the whole world wanted him and he decided for Real Madrid. I remember as it would have been yesterday that we sat on a table with his dad and we were all so excited. Then came a few difficult years, which is normal when you are that much in the spotlight. So, he became the player everybody expected him to be that time.

“Saka, from the first day since he’s playing it’s incredible. And Gabriel Jesus, if anybody knew how good he could be not in a Man City shirt, in the fixed No.9 role, No.1 in the line-up, if you want, then it was Mikel because he worked together with him. Same with Zinchenko, saw great things. Brought Xhaka back on track. Thomas Partey, everybody knew how good he is when he was at Atletico.

“The last line is now really well settled, they found a way how they want to defend. Last night obviously they played a different line-up but still lots of quality. It’s a young team, a very exciting team, doing really well and [that] they are in the position they are [is] well deserved.

“Now we go there. Obviously we don’t think about the games we played against them [last season] because it makes not too much sense. We will try to cause them problems, I think that makes sense. So, I’m looking forward to it.”

We all are, Jurgen, we all are.

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Safe Hands

I’m fully expecting a strong Liverpool side to turn up. They know they can’t afford to drop any more points so they’ll be dangerous. However, it shows how far we’ve come that we go into this fully expecting to not only give them a good game, but probably as slight favourites. That definitely would not have been the case 6 months ago…….
We can also definitely get at that back line. I think Martinelli will give them real problems down that left side. COYG, we’re all behind you!

Jimboslice

Here’s to hoping he tears Trent a new one. I think we’ll need 3+ goals to secure the 3 points as players like Jota always score against us.

baxy

Saliba will deal with Jota…..i hope

Nas

The way you under estimate Trent is really silly.. Really.. Have some respect man seriously.. I dont love Liverpool but Trent is a quality player and seems like a great guy

Safe Hands

Turns out we can both predict the future 😀😀

mjc1892

Believe Robertson is still injured too so it’s Gabi and Saka vs Trent and Tsimikas.. Could get ugly.

Sunglasses

Absolutely man, well said. 😁 On a side note…. Klop get your beady eyes off our players!!!!

Prakhar

Klopp, a nice man who motivates very very selective bunch of young players with his influential kind words.

Prakhar

Klopp is not praising for all young players, he has his favourites.

RockyRog58

Time to stop Jota !!! Our defence is looking excellent but I’d have Tierney in there tomorrow. Bit of rotational shithousery err ahum cough cough tackling on Jota would be good But away from shooting distance from free kick territory would be most excellent ! Martinelli & Jesus can win this by more than 1 so let’s be solid & let them rip them up ! They need the fear in their eyes this time & we need to realise we are this good & let them know it ! C”Mon the Gooners !!!

Boy Bastin

We need a win, no doubt about that. As City are likely to pick up all the points against Southampton today, we don’t want to risk relinquishing the top spot tomorrow while still in the early stages of a very busy month. I think we’ll win but I suspect it will be a tight game – it’s the three points that matter in the end though.

A Different George

I certainly want us to win, but I cannot believe anyone is seriously worried about “relinquishing the top spot” because Man City are likely to win. Man City will be favoured to win every single match they play this year, in all competitions. I want them to lose one league match, for obvious reasons, but otherwise I hope they win every time they play Liverpool, Chelsea, Man United, or Spurs (well, I would hope that last one every year).

Boy Bastin

I don’t quite understand your point. I’m worried about giving up the top spot to City should we draw or lose to Liverpool because I’m not at all sure we can regain it should they build up reasonable points gap over us.

They have an obvious momentum behind them currently. Haaland has now scored 20 goals in all competitions I think – if so, that’s only 5 fewer than Arsenal has. I want us to retain that top spot as long as possible and we won’t do that by anything less than a win tomorrow.

Mayor McCheese

I think maybe he means that there’s no point worrying about the inevitable?

Duno

😂😂😂
Allow him. A man can dream. 😂

Jimboslice

Respect for not living in the clouds, the gap between other rivals has definitely dropped this season, especially with Liverpool’s drop in form and loss of key players, but city have reached a whole new level with haaland and certainly look unstoppable. Wouldn’t even be surprised if they go undefeated.

Brady’s bunch

Trent will be holding his hamstrings after this one

Cranky Colin

I’ve always liked Klopp, but it’s the time now to beat him.

Side note: Blogs mentioned this morning i, that it’s unlikely that Ben will go to the World Cup………….damn, that’s so funny, so damn funny. ( and clueless)

Qwaliteee

Generally speaking, I respect Klopp and his achievements speak for themselves. Let’s not forget he also spared mankind of the worst football result in the known universe since the dawn of time.

Tomorrow, however, is a different day, a different game and no amount of lavished praise can escape the fact that we owe these phlegm spouting ‘fair-minded’ scouse fuckwits, big time.

COYG

EmileSmithWhoa

Such a massive compliment to Arteta from Klopp. On that note… How cool would it be if Arsenal fans and not Arteta led a welcome back and apology for a man named Wenger. All of those who pushed him out, the same ones who essentially pushed out Xhaka, and also attempted to push out Arteta, Wenger was and is the inspiration for all that is Great about Arsenal. Spike Lee made a movie for all of us and you, Do The Right Thong, I mean Thing!

Bleeding gums murphy

I loved and love Wenger, when most of my friends had turned on him I remained loyal. In the end he had to be pushed as he wouldn’t go. He had lost his way. We would not be where we are today without the push so stop blaming fans.

Boy Bastin

Yes. We must remember that AW had almost total control over every aspect of the club from the playing side, to transfers, to overseeing the move to The Emirates etc. It’s quite right therefore that he should take the credit when things went well (as they did for many seasons, as we know) but, by the same logic, he must therefore also take the blame when things didn’t – as in the last few seasons. In the end he stayed too long and had to be asked to go but he does leave an enduring legacy.

Jimboslice

Atleast he doesn’t still have pull and influence like Fergi, would love Wenger to come back to the Emirates and watch a game but I think it’s been good he’s disappeared for these years, it’s allowed us to completely move on and rebrand our football.

EmileSmithWhoa

The fan behavior was improper. To say you know what would have happened is not true. Wenger could have adapted and thrived. We could have made changes later and hav3 been better earlier. Wenger earned our respect, laid our foundations and deserved better no matter when or how he left. I trust Arteta and his opinions more than most…he led the fans to regain a positive stadium at the same time he still works to get Wenger back…trust the process.

Emi Rates

Wenger deserved and deserves everyone’s respect but it was time for him to go. How that went down we don’t know and while its likely it wasn’t done in a gentlemanly way it’s not on Arteta or this team to make a big “welcome back” song and dance of it either. They have a season to focus on which is quite enough. Be glad that Wenger isn’t hanging around The Emirates like a bad smell the way Ferguson does at Man U. It’s not healthy and the last ten years there have proven it. Unlike them we have moved on… Read more »

Mpls

Water under the bridge, amigo. Let it go. We’re done with those arguments.

Mentalista

Klopp’s like a monkey throwing darts with his praising of every one of our players by name in an attempt to unsettle them. Such a joker. Hope Arteta make the boys focus and respond on the pitch.

North Bank Gooner

Looking forward to giving them a game, we really look like a side that may trouble them.
Good times!

jiggernaught

I like Klopp but want him to hate us after tomorrow.

Valasa

I hate klopp’s mind games. A win should shut him up 4ever

flash

2 fun saliba questions, for both pretend he is currently on a 4 year deal:

1. which defenders in the word would you make a straight swap for?

2. you’re offered fofana and 50m to trade. yes or no?

flash

world*

Jimboslice

Nobody, he’s the hottest young defender in the world right now. He’d be fetching Virgil fees if he plays like this the whole season. If you want to win competitions you hold your Virgil’s.

PolyEmery

*and your Willys.

Arshavins left foot

Auston Trusty looking like a good signing playing well for Birmingham City and scoring twice yesterday.

Up North

Klopp praises or not, so nervous before this one that I’m close to vomiting. You got hope, but the fear of another crash and burn is overwhelming.

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