In the midst of Arsenal’s troubles, William Saliba may have increased pressure on the club to remove Mikel Arteta.
Arsenal are now in last place in the Premier League, having lost three games in a row to begin the season.
Mikel Arteta’s decision-making has been called into question by William Saliba’s outstanding performances while on loan in France, with the Spaniard already under pressure at the Emirates. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger let the talented defender leave earlier this summer, but the Gunners’ poor start to the season shows he could be just what they need to turn things around.
After Marseille came calling, Arteta risked damaging Saliba’s morale by authorizing a third consecutive loan spell to Ligue 1.
After initial loan spells with St Etienne and Nice, the Frenchman had grown in stature and experience, but Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger did not believe he was ready to contribute at the Emirates this season.
In a bittersweet turn of events, the Arsenal loanee has been in superb form for Marseille, as evidenced by his 3-1 win against St Etienne on Saturday.
To add salt to the wounds, fellow Gunners loanee Matteo Guendouzi scored as Jorge Sampaoli’s side romped to a convincing victory.
Arteta’s choice to let Saliba leave appears particularly unwise given his decision to continue with Pablo Mari, a fan-unpopular figure with little top-flight experience.
Arsenal, on the other hand, paid over £30 million for Saliba in 2019 after a string of encouraging displays in France’s top flight.
To add to Arteta’s defensive woes, £50m signing Ben White was overrun by Ivan Toney in his Arsenal debut before being replaced by Covid.
Gabriel has yet to return to the north London side’s ranks, while Rob Holding has done his best to calm the ship that is on the edge of becoming a shipwreck.
Because of the Gunners’ terrible start to the season, Arteta’s decisions are being scrutinized more closely, and letting Saliba leave is one of them.
Arsenal conceded two goals in each of their first two games against Brentford and Chelsea, before succumbing to a humiliating 5-0 hammering at the Etihad.
Arteta, who is at the bottom of the league with no points and no goals, will have a small reprieve over the international break, but when play begins, all eyes will be on him.
When it comes to matters that need to be resolved immediately, defense takes precedence, and Arteta may not have the resources he needs.