Should Rob Holding now be a permanent starter in Arsenal’s First XI?

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?

Pat J

Tags Arsenal Rob Holding


  1. ThirdManJW says:

    He gave away a really sloppy penalty against Everton the other day, but has been excellent other than that. I’d personally have him as a regular starter, but I guess it depends on the formation because it’ll be tough to consistently bench Koscielny, or Mustafi if one is only playing with two CB’s. I would have all three starting in the current formation though.

    I agree with the writer, that Holding is about the only decent thing to come out of this dismal season.

    OT – For all those still scared of change, or just ignorantly not wanting it – Man Utd changed their manager last summer, and Mourinho has now qualified for the Champions League, and has won three trophies out of a possible five in just nine months. Since the ‘Invincibles’ Wenger has also won three trophies, but over a span of 13 years! Embarrassing!

    1. Will says:

      If we won the league cup and community shield, would you be saying the same about Wenger?

      1. H says:

        We didn’t win anything & we not gna win anything.

    2. Quantic Dream says:

      Monreal was the one who gave away the penalty not Holding! Get your facts right.

      1. anthony says:

        joke on you Quantic Dream. “get your facts right”, hahaha. Why don’t you go to youtube to see the video again? Don’t be so sure about something unless you double check it young man.

      2. ThirdManJW says:

        Actually, get your facts right! It WAS Holding. Go back and watch the replays. For some reason they show a closeup of Monreal not long after the incident, but it was Holding. I’ll be expecting your apology.

        1. Quantic Dream says:

          Whoops ive watched it again its Holding who handled. Sorry man.

  2. khangunners says:

    Holding if managed well has the potential to be a wc cb. He makes few mistakes and so far the biggest mistake he made was that penalty after soo many games. He has the potential to surpass even koss. I think we should manage him with caution especially if wenger is around. Just look at bellerin who has taken steps backwards.

  3. GrahamB says:


  4. John says:

    I believe selection for each game should be based on current form………current fitness level for that game………formation and strategy…….,players should compete, chosen and be prepared only for each game… is the case for best fit for each and every game……

  5. amb98 says:

    Holding has been fantastic and has undoubted potential but we need to be cautious with him and see how he handles himself when he inevitably has a dip in form (e.g. like Chambers, Bellerin and Iwobi have had). Still feel we should sign a physically imposing centre back in the summer e.g. Tah/Van Dijk/Koulibaly or even Sakho, especially if we play a back 3 and rotate defenders as we will have a lot of games next year.

  6. Rorie Day says:

    The back three should be Kos, Mustafi and Holding; with Chambers and Nacho on the bench as first back up’s. (Presuming Sead is an auto starter).

    Have Belik as further back up for the League Cup and Lesser Europa Matches.

  7. Zaidy says:

    This weekend will be his biggest test up against Hazard and co.
    A test he doesn’t necessarily need to pass with flying colours. If he shows fight and will.
    Id be satisfied, since he only cost us 2m.

  8. FrankN says:

    I’d hardly call the Community Shield and League cup trophies. That’s mid table thinking.

  9. GunnerSince2004 says:

    Rob Holding was bought for 2 million but played better and seems to be less injury-prone than John Stones who was bought for 47 million. Or was it 52 million? We could buy a whole team of Rob Holdings with that money kkkkk. He’s the best young English defencive talent I’ve seen in a while in the EPL.

    1. #why_wenger? says:

      And how does beefing stones improve arsenal’s quality?…or did it improve the team’s table position?

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