Pundit says Arsenal’s big-money signing is clearly bad at his job

Gabby Agbonlahor has slated Ben White for being overrated and dreadful, but he says William Saliba can replace the England international.

White is a big-money signing from Brighton, and the last campaign was his first season at the Emirates.

The defender has been one of England’s most recognisable centre-backs, and he formed a fine defensive partnership with Gabriel Magalhaes at Arsenal last season.

Mikel Arteta trusts him and that is a reason he is one of the first names on the team sheet at the Emirates.

However, former Aston Villa attacker, Agbonlahor, is unconvinced by the former Leeds United loanee and insists he is overrated.

He tells Football Insider: “I’ve watched Saliba a few times and he’s got that speed that you like to see in a centre-half and he’s very good at making the right decision at the right time.

“Arsenal’s defence is nowhere near good enough to get top-four. For me, Ben White is very overrated, I watched him against Newcastle towards the end of the season and he was absolutely dreadful.

“He lacks pace, he lacks aggression. Yes, he’s good on the ball but he’s not a defensive midfielder, he’s a centre-half.”

Adding: “It’s a shame that Arsenal have wasted a lot of money again. It was the same with Pepe. Ben White was not needed and Saliba should start ahead of him.”

Just Arsenal Opinion

It is fair enough to have an opinion on a player, but it doesn’t mean you are right.

Gabby’s opinion of White is different from what some of us think. His first season at the Emirates was very good, and we nearly finished inside the top four because of his contributions.

He should get better in the next campaign, perhaps that will make Agbonlahor change his mind.

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Tags Ben White William Saliba


  1. our entire XI was dreadful against Newcastle. Guess we should have a wholesale on that entire XI according to him. White had a good first season. Abonlahor likes to say ludicrous things to grab headlines.

  2. Correct me if I’m wrong, but was Ben White not sick vs. Newcastle and only forced back so early because of Rob Holding’s Red against Sp*rs? Pretty sure that had a fair contribution to his game.

  3. Abit harsh on the lad but definitely has not lived up to the hype as of yet and the fee we paid looks double of what he’s worth IMO
    Made me chuckle when I read some fans last season saying he is the best CB we have had since Campbell .
    Maybe he will kick in abit this season who knows .

  4. Who really gives any credence to anything said by a professional footballer! who never won anything in his career. Even worse as an ” expert” commentator Loving it

  5. Another ex player who’s contribution to the game was minimal to say the least.

    It’s always unfair to judge a player on one game, but I disagree that he had a good season.
    If you spend £50,000,000 on a defender, you expect him to be top class.
    That, in my opinion, is not the case, but fingers crossed that, with the arrival of Saliba, he will prove his worth and we improve on our GA numbers.

  6. Coming from the striker with a career average of less than 7 goals a season… clearly don’t know enough about football or defenders to comment really!

  7. I hope Saliba and (hopefully) Martinez will bring som much needed competition to the back line. Ben White was definately not worthy of £50m in his first season with us. I’m also hoping it was just settling in jitters. Must improve next season!

  8. Ben White is a good player, but he just does not play with a sense of urgency. In many games that can be a good thing….he ‘SEES’ what is happening. In big frantic games it’s not so good. With William Saliba coming back there can be a more measured rotation. £50 mill was way overpay though. Our defence has generally been good, but towards the end of the season the midfield was…..not very good at all. We lost the midfield….to NEWCASTLE. C’mon!!!!! We DESPERATELY need a quality, tough, creative, dogged, hard, midfield player. For me the season depends on it. The N17 imposters got Bissouma…..where the feck were we????? If we don’t get the right midfield player we are Donald D’d.

  9. I’d like to know what the appeal of Agbonlahor is to Ad PAT! He is hardly the sharpest tool in the box, after all and so why are his daft utterances considered worth reporting?

    Id really like to know WHY he is deemed to be any importance at all. To me, he is a thick, Brummie low IQ irritant and of no importance whatsoever.

    Perhaps he is a friend of Ad PATS though,as I cannot think of any other reason why he is so often quoted. Anyone know why ??

      1. Bit racist calling your grandfather a Brummie Pat.
        A West Midland wannabe striker is much more appropriate for the new look JA surely?!?!

  10. well, all i can say is that gabby agb has a good history of aggression ,so, i guess he would know.

  11. What a load of flannel.

    White and Gabby was not the issue to our defensive woes last season.

    Our naivety in Central midfield caused the majority of our problems. If our alleged defensive midfielder keeps pushing forward and playing ‘Roy of the Rovers’ leaving a gaping hole between defense and midfield then we had no chance.

    Personally; individually I thought White and Gabby had good seasons. Not their fault that they were left exposed time after time.

    So who’s fault is that?🤫

  12. Totally unimpressed with White, not what i thought he was supposed to be. I see nothing in him to suggest we should have spent so much money on him and shown Saliba the door. Saliba at the time looked a better prospect and still does, strange strange decisions.

  13. The word garbage comes to mind when Agbonlahor suggests White lacks pace.He is a very promising young CB for whom we paid a hefty premium, but that is certainly not his fault.In terms of ball skills and the ability to take the ball into midfield ,he is as good as any CB in the EPL.Apart from his lack of physical presence ,and aerial ability, his main weakness stems from an inability to concentrate on marking his opponent .Personally I think he will develop into a fine CB , and as others have already said,the midfield area is where we need some “beefing” up.I very much look forward to comparing White with Saliba, who I have only seen briefly.Hopefully the hype surrounding the latter will prove to be well founded .

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