6 aerial challenges, 4 tackles, 1 key pass: £40k-a-week Arsenal ace justifying Arteta's faith in him
Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

6 aerial challenges, 4 tackles, 1 key pass: £40k-a-week Arsenal ace justifying Arteta's faith in him

Arsenal secured top spot in Europa League Group A as they recorded a 1-0 win over FC Zurich.

The Gunners were eager to get the job done in the competition after losing to PSV Eindhoven last week.

And Arsenal didn’t have to wait long to make a breakthrough.

Photo by Jacques Feeney/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

After the quarter-hour mark, Reiss Nelson threated a lovely pass through for Ben White to cross from the right.

Fabio Vieira saw an effort blocked, but the ball popped up for Kieran Tierney to drill home from the edge of the box.

The floodgates didn’t open for Arsenal, however – in the end, the Scotland international’s goal proved crucial.

Indeed, Zurich came close to equalising when Adrian Guerrero’s finish was ruled out for offside.

The Gunners held on to make it 14 home games unbeaten in all competitions.

And while Tierney was the standout with his performance, quite a few players emerged with plenty of credit.

Once again, Rob Holding was one of those, the £2million man making a name for himself as a Europa League star.

Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

‘Rarely lost a single 50-50’

The 27-year-old clocked up some impressive stats, as per Whoscored.

Holding got 59 touches of the ball – second-highest in the game behind Tierney – and 47 passes, including a key pass.

The £2million man also won four tackles and six aerial challenges, and made one interception and one clearance.

In addition, Holding played nine long balls, four of which were accurate.

The Evening Standard gave the £40,000-a-week ace 7 out of 10 for his efforts.

“Started a little shaky early on, but he improved as the match went on,” they wrote.

“Won plenty of headers and rarely lost a single 50-50 all night.”

Holding may not be one of Arsenal’s marquee players, but he’s certainly repaying Mikel Arteta’s faith in him.

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