Rob Holding was pushing to leave the club in January in order to play more regularly, but is happy that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger convinced him to stay put. The 21 year-old joined the club from Bolton Wanderers last summer for around £2 Million, and has been used sparingly in his first season with the club.
Now Holding is in line to start this weekend’s FA Cup final however, having earned the right to be in Wenger’s first-team plans since his recent formation change, which accommodates a back-three, and he deserves to be starting in the weekend’s crucial match.
The youngster has now admitted that he was looking to leave the club mid-season, after a severe lack of playing time in the earlier part of the campaign, but after talking to Arsene Wenger, he was convinced to stay put.
“I didn’t leave in January as the boss wanted me around the team. He saw me playing,” Holding said. “I just had to listen to him and keep working hard on the things he mentioned. That has spoken for itself over the last few games.
“I got a look in at the start of the season and then some cup games. After that it was just about being on the training pitch, putting the work in and getting another chance.
“Since I got the chance, I’ve managed to take it and the boss has shown some faith in me to keep me in the team.”
Holding has been a rare bright spark to be excited about from this season, with our club enduring it’s worst league finish in the Wenger-era. The defender is a certainty to be leading England’s senior side in the near future, and even looks to be a leader despite his young age.
Does Holding deserve to be a starter in our side even when everyone is fully fit? Could he be a future club and international captain?