Arsenal’s handling of Saliba baffles his former boss

Claude Puel has questioned the motive behind Arsenal’s move for William Saliba as the French teenage star continues to be absent from the club’s first team.

Saliba signed for Arsenal last summer for £27m from Saint Etienne and a good section of the club’s fans were very excited even if most of them hadn’t seen him play until that time.

He was allowed to continue his development at the French side until the end of last season.

He joined the Gunners this summer, with the team struggling at the back, he was expected to become a first-team regular.

He has, however, not made any appearances for the club so far and Saint Etienne even failed in a last-minute bid to take him back on loan for this season.

He was also touted to leave Arsenal on loan to an English side before today’s English transfer window deadline. However, the club called that off.

Puel was speaking to L’Equipe recently and he admits that he is baffled that the defender hasn’t been involved and he wonders why he was signed by the Gunners in the first place.

He told L’Equipe as quoted by The Metro: ‘It was short-term [thinking], even for the kids. A superb player like William, to whom I wish the best, has not even made it to Arsenal’s Europa League squad. Where is the logic, if not financial?’

Tags Claude Puel William Saliba


  1. This is pure madness from arsenal right

    Am Struggling to imagine what MA is thinking
    Not even in the Europe league squad
    No cup games
    What the f**k is going on

    1. Mike arteta is showing his arrogance sine he won 2 cups in a short time…anyway saliba purchase wasn’t his choice that’s why he’s doing this to saliba…this is damaging the kid’s morale n confidence….mikel arteta needs a waking up call n hopefully it’s soon before he start to think that he is better than pep…..

      1. Perhaps he Saliba was not mentally committed due goal of the personal problems, moms passing etc. Maybe it is as simple as Arteta wanting to get his attention in training. Given that he is not now to be loaned perhaps Arteta’s methods work?

      2. But this has already been debunked countless times here. Nearly the whole squad is not Mikel purchase choices.

    2. That is why you and me are arm chair managers trying to dictate who plays, who shouldn’t and what tactics to be employed..
      Let Arteta do his job and let his own decisions dictate his own downfall or success.
      We can only wait to see.

  2. Its the mighty Arteta that you praise so much. The problem with Arteta is that he want to fix the problems at Arsenal in one season. He want to use experience over capabilities. Emery acquired young players (Tierney, Martinelli, Gouendouzi, Seliba and Ceballos). Very capable youngsters, but he doesn’t value them, except TieTierney. Too bad for Arsenal

    1. We don’t know about Martinelli since he is injured for a long time and I don’t think when fit Mikel will overlook such talent. Martinelli is one of those Mikel is going to build his foundation upon.

      Didn’t he brought back Ceballos on loan again?

      He played Guendouzi before. I think they had a fallout in Dubai but Mikel gave him another chance and he went back to his ways again. Hopefully his loan to Bundesliga will make him come back a mature player as we can benefit from his talent.

      Just my opinion.

      1. And lest we forget, didn’t Mart play in that Chelsea game where he scored that worldie, and wasn’t Arteta the manager?

  3. Let Arteta do his job. His own decisions will dictate his own destiny at Arsenal.
    Lets give him a chance to decide on who gets in the team and who doesn’t.
    It’s does not matter if he benches a £350,000 a week player, a £70 million player, a £27 million player or a free agent. What matters are the results on the pitch. If he fails then all knives should be out on him.
    He is the manager at the moment.

    1. I agree on first half but not second. There should always be check and balance, otherwise we can end up in real mess. Let MA do his job n part of that job is selecting the squad for different competitions but he needs to also provide logical reasons for not selecting what fans seem to think as talented expensive buys and preferring proven mediocre avg players like Nkeitiah, Willock and Nelson. So what the next manager who comes in finds Partey and co signed by MA as surplus n bench them. Players like Tierney and Saliba did not come cheap considering their age so we can not just throw that money away with out even questioning. If we are that rich then why bother with Job cuts?

  4. How can Arteta say this kids cannot get into Europa and carabobo cup? It doesn’t make sense?.. Mayb because he didn’t buy him

  5. Same thing will happen to Martenelli as well. They are both not MA signing so he does not want them at the club. Pepe has cost us £70m so he is forced by board to play him but it’s clear from signing of Willian, Pepe is unwanted as well. I think MA is trying to be like pep…it’s his way or high way. It’s works well for the manager as long as he keeps winning but when he starts to loose then same players he has benched will contribute to his sacking. So MA needs to be careful here, don’t just do things just to force his authority but do things which benefits the club.

    1. If we go by your logic, only willian, Soars, and Gabriel should be playing, since those are his only signing

        1. As for me both were brought in to provide competition for our inconsistent players. But am skeptical about willian doing that, but overall, his experience will be valuable in helping the likes of Martinelli, Saka and Nelson improve, as well as provide competition for pepe

  6. The non inclusion of Saliba is certainly mysterious. I wonder what MA knows which fans do not know. Anyway, all will be well if we keep on winning, but if results do not go our way, MA will have to justify his reasons. Saliba was an excellent buy and only MA knows why he is not playing.

    1. Because he is the coach and sees the players regularly in training…
      We fans are just at home on our keyboards assuming what goes on behind the scenes..
      Let the coaches do their job.
      A lot of things that have been revealed from both Wenger and Bendtner recently shows we fans know nothing about what goes on regularly.
      Saliba still has time on his hands as he’s 19.. Let the manager allow him settle and sort out his personal issues..
      Just look at Maguire with all the personal issues and how it has affected his game.

  7. If I understand Puel message correctly, it seems not using Saliba is denying ASSE some financial entitlement, from the player contract. Though he seems to be speaking for interest but as well his club financial interest.
    Myself and many are baffled at the decision to loan out Saliba but that’s what the coach feels, end of story, I hope the player take this setback as a challenge to inspire him to stardom like Gnabry did.

  8. Only Arteta understands what is happening. To me Saliba is still young and has more years ahead so if he continue working hard he will have more room to play, luiz,sokratis,mustafi are leaving likely chambers if he doesn’t impress Arteta so more room. The guy is still young and as for the comment on martinelli I doubt Arteta will bench him, the guy is fans favourite after that Chelsea goal. He will replace lacazette I guess. Theboy to me looks better than nketiah but u can prove me wrong due. Let’s just wait and see what Arteta plans are. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

      1. You can’t keep comparing players as everyone has a different personality and mentality..
        Besides those guys are attacking wide players who are usually given freedom on the pitch.
        Onw mistake from the defender and its still foolish fans that would descend on him.
        You know nothing about what happens at the club, so stop claiming or typing like you do

  9. Only Saka and Maitland-Niles proved Arteta wrong by playing far beyond expectations. They could also be in the same list of Seliba, Gouendouzi, Martinelli, Nelson, and Ceballos

  10. The real question is would you bench holding or David Luiz who in my opinion is the most experienced player in Arsenal for Saliba. This Saliba agitation is uncalled for. Clearly he is in arteta’s plan for the foreseeable future. He is only 19 for goodness sake and there is an experienced Luiz there . Let’s let the guy mature very well. We will see him more when he recovers mentally and adapts, even more when the Luiz and co must have said there good byes to the club. There is reason Arteta is maneager and we are not and a reason why inspite of his decisions the players all seem to speak well of him. Patience is required here!

    Anyway my first proper comment here here!!

    1. Spot on..
      These fickle fans like Simon and co, who pretend to know what goes on in both the players and Manager’s head meanwhile they know nothing of how psychology and mentality works for different personalities yet they keep comparing Saliba to Fati and Sancho..
      One mistake from the young lad Saliba, and they would insult both he and his family

    2. This is very reasonable post but my concern is by the time the boy get his chance he might have 2 years left on his contract. And if he shows what he is capable of other clubs will come for him and this will put us in danger of losing him if he and we consider what is happening now. The boy needs to be part of he squad and play. We invested so much on him. If Willock is playing, Nelson is playing then Saliba should as well. Who is keeping him out the squad chambers, Holding, Sokratis? He should be made to slog it out with mentioned players especially Chambers who is just coming back into the team.

    3. It would have been nice to allow saka, wilock and Nketia to mature.
      From Arsenal culture, Even looking at the current team, maturity not an excuse to bench Saliba. Give him his chance if he fails we’ll all see.
      We are seeing Willian’s performance since after Fulam. It will be understandable if he starts coming from the bench for Pepe.

  11. Saliba was left out of Europe because at the time, MA thought he would go out on loan but that didn’t work out. On the other hand, he needs to go out and play to get ready for the rigours of EPL. How many 19yr olds play in the premier league in the heart of the defense? None, and at the moment, the stakes are too high for MA to put two relatively inexperienced players who are new to the league in the center of the defence. Maybe when the team has more balance and confidence, he can do that. Saliba will play in the carabao, epl and FA cup eventually.

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