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‘I will keep pushing him’: Mikel Arteta raves about 6ft 1in Arsenal man, will strive to ‘make him better’

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Arsenal

‘I will keep pushing him’: Mikel Arteta raves about 6ft 1in Arsenal man, will strive to ‘make him better’

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has praised Gunners defender David Luiz for what he has brought to the club, in conversation with Sky Sports.

The Emirates Stadium boss also pledged to keep doing all he can to “make him better and stop his weaknesses”.

Luiz was an £8million signing from Chelsea last August, replacing then Arsenal club captain Laurent Koscielny, who joined Bordeaux the previous day.

(Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images)

Some of the Brazilian’s performances have come under major scrutiny, none more so than against Manchester City in the Gunners’ return to Premier League action.

Luiz, who came on in the 24th minute for the injured Pablo Mari, failed to clear the ball just before half time, which enabled Raheem Sterling to open the scoring.

The 33-year-old then conceded a penalty and was sent off for pulling Riyad Mahrez back, with Kevin De Bruyne duly slotting in for City’s second en route to a 3-0 win.

It was widely reported that Luiz had penned a two-year deal last summer, but it transpired that he’d only signed a one-year contract, and speculation on his future was rampant.

 

In the end, Arsenal confirmed that the Selecao man had agreed fresh terms, keeping him at the Emirates Stadium for another season – a decision met with a mixed response to say the least.

However, Luiz firmly retains his manager’s backing, with Arteta telling Sky Sports: “His attitude and the way he has behaved with everybody at the club, not just in easy moments but in difficult moments, tells me everything about the person.

(Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

“He knows the role he has here. You can ask any player in the team how he is with his teammates, what he brings to the table, and how willing he is to do well at this football club.

“He made a really difficult decision to leave Chelsea with two years left on his contract. It was a complicated decision to change clubs in London like that. But he felt it was the right move and that is the type of character he is.

“I will keep pushing him, keep trying to make him better and stop his weaknesses so that all the positive things he has can flourish.”

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While some of Luiz’s performances have left a lot to be desired, he does do well in a back three, and since Arsenal have begun playing 3-4-3, their performances and results have improved.

Support for Luiz in the Arsenal camp is high – as well as Arteta talking about what he offers, it was also notable that Bukayo Saka cited the 6ft 1in defender’s support as a key factor in his recent development when he signed his new contract earlier this week.

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