Arsenal’s 9 Central Defenders Since Gabriel Paulista – Ranked

Arsenal, Shkodran Mustafi (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)
Arsenal, Shkodran Mustafi (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images) /
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3. William Saliba

Arsenal, /

With a grand total of zero Premier League outings for the club, in at number three is William Saliba. Why doesn’t Mari get the same love? Promise. That’s why.

Fending off interest from across Europe to secure the Frenchman’s signature, it’s impossible to ignore the avalanche of praise that’s come with the 19-year-old, to the point where he’s already being tipped to be the club’s defensive saviour. That is getting way ahead of ourselves, since Saliba is still only a kid, completely untested on English shores.

A combative, technical elegant and assured kid, mind you.

We’ll likely not see the best of Saliba for a few years yet. Everyone is pinning their hopes on him hitting the ground running, and while possible, that only puts him on a pedestal high enough for him to fall right back off. Tempering expectations is paramount, but with no single person expecting him to be anything other than brilliant, that’s genuine cause for optimism.

Still, we’ll have to wait and see.