Calum Chambers has told Arsenal’s official website that anyone who thought that he was jealous of Rob Holding while he played for the Gunners first-team last season was completely wrong.
Chambers is back in Unai Emery’s ranks after spending a year out on loan at Fulham. Meanwhile, Holding impressed the Emirates faithful last season as he made 10 Premier League appearances, while playing a further five games in the Europa League.
An injury brought an end to the 23-year-old’s campaign back in December. He is closing in on a return to first-team contention, while Chambers is back in the fold after returning from his loan at Craven Cottage.
And as he reflected on his development, Chambers – who moved to North London in a £16 million deal in 2014, according to the Guardian – insisted that he was delighted to see Holding take full advantage of the opportunity he got last term before he sustained the season-ending injury.
“People asked me how it felt to be on loan and watching Arsenal from a distance,” he told the club’s official website. “I think they thought I’d be jealous of Rob starting every week for Arsenal before his injury – but that’s absolutely not the case.
“I was so happy for Rob and I loved watching him play. He was doing so well and he’s a good friend of mine, so I was just really happy for him.”
It would not be a surprise to see both Chambers and Holding feature regularly in the same Arsenal team in the near future.
Chambers has impressed in the early stages of this season – he scored Arsenal’s second equalising goal in the 3-2 win over Aston Villa on Sunday – and plenty of fans appear to be extremely excited about Holding’s potential.
And with Sokratis and David Luiz struggling at centre-back, Emery may relish the opportunity to pick Holding again.
The pair have taken fairly different paths to the Arsenal first-team. But it appears that they could soon be just as important to Emery’s plans as each other.