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Willian “will bring a lot of joy to Arsenal” – Ex-chelsea Team-mate

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The arrival of Willian in the summer brought a mixed reaction from Arsenal fans. We all knew how good he could be when he played for Chelsea and we had high hopes he would bring some trickiness and energy to our play.

But things have not worked out at all so far, and it can’t help his confidence that he is getting more and more abuse from Gooners after yet another uninspiring performance, and he seems to be a victim of his lack of self-belief at the moment.

But his countryman (and ex-Chelsea team-mate) David Luiz is very sure that the 32 year-old will regain his former confidence and skill. “Few people know the person Willian. But those who do know can’t say they don’t love him. Because everyone loves him as a person,” Luiz told ESPN Brasil.

Everyone knows the player Willian. And everyone knows Willian’s potential. And he doesn’t have to prove anything to anyone after so many years at the highest level. And he’s in a moment which is not so pleasant on the individual level because things are not happening.

But he’s an experienced, intelligent guy, who knows what he should know, and what he must do every day.

 

“You don’t see Willian murmuring about training, you don’t see Willian not training. He’s always dedicated, he’s looking for the best, to improve, to grow. You don’t see Willian with an ugly face on the bench. All those things.

“So he’s a guy who will get through this, he will get through this moment and he’ll still bring a lot of joy to Arsenal, to this club. Because there’s this turbulence, just as I had in the first few months.

It’s not easy, you change clubs, from one rival to another, you have all the cannons facing you. Everything you do people will compare [to what you’d done before].

Supporters on one side who loved you are sad because you left and are nervous. Supporters on the other side, who cheered against you, are like, ‘I’m not going to like this guy who came from the other side’.

“You end up feeling, in a way, just a little unsure until you adapt. My first months weren’t easy, and that’s what I try to pass on to Willian. ‘Calm down, things will work out, things will happen. Just keep working because you’re you, there’s no way to change. You’re a great person and you’re a great player. Calm down. Things are going to happen’.

That’s what we try. Everyone already loves Willian here, so I know that things will happen in the best possible way soon.”

 

Well it does seem strange that Willian has not really performed for Arsenal since the Fulham game at the start of the season, but he does get severely scrutinized by fans in every single game. Maybe if us fans started believing in him, he may start believing in himself?

This run of bad form can’t last forever. Form is temporary, but class is permanent.

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Unai Emery names 8 Arsenal stars who will be a threat to Villarreal ahead of Europa League clash

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Unai Emery has highlighted eight Arsenal players who he feels could threaten his Villarreal side ahead of their Europa League semi final clash on Thursday.

 

The Spaniard spent a season and a half as Gunners boss and guided them to the final of this competition in 2019 where they lost to Chelsea.

 

However, things unravelled pretty quickly after that and Emery was sacked in November of that year after a two match winless run.

Much of the squad that were there during the 49-year-old’s time in charge at the Emirates are still there today and speaking ahead of Thursday night’s reunion he outlined the players he would be warning his current Villarreal side about the most.

“Well as for the game plan I’m sure Arteta will have given them a personal touch. This is what I tried to do,” he told press ahead of the clash.

“It’s a very recognisable Arsenal. They have a very marked identity and they show a lot of progress with Arteta.

From that point onwards they have top quality players – Ceballos, Odegaard, Saka – quick players – Aubameyang, Bukayo, Martinelli. They have very quick players on the side like Bellerin.

“But they have a very solid defensive structure, they can do a passing structure. It’s going to be a very tough match. A very demanding team Arsenal. They’re going to be very demanding in terms of positional game.

 

“We need to play our passing game ourselves. The minute you let them run they have very speedy players like Pepe with plenty of space.

“They have lots of individual arguments where they can make a cocktail. We have to be very aware of players like Aubameyang and Lacazette, but they have many different types of players, many different game plans and many ways to execute their game plan on the pitch and we need to be ready for that.

We will of course wait for our moments and try and play our game properly.”

 

Emery is the most successful manager in history of the Europa League having won it three times in consecutive seasons with Sevilla between 2014 and 2016.

 

However, with European qualification via the Premier League now looking impossible Arsenal will need to overcome their former manager to have any chance of playing on the continent next season

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Arsenal will need to sell this key player if they fail to qualify for the Champions League

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Arsenal will have to sell off their young prodigy Bukayo Saka if they fail to secure Champions League qualification for the 2021-22 season, as per the latest reports in England.

The Mail cites The Times saying: “Mikel Arteta will reportedly have to consider selling Bukayo Saka in order to raise funds for Arsenal to spend in the summer, with a permanent deal for Martin Odegaard a top priority.

Odegaard, who is thought to be valued at £35million by Real Madrid, has been another of the team’s shining lights this season during a campaign which has seen the north Londoners become mired in mid-table after an eight-placed finish last season and fail to defend the FA Cup after crashing out to Southampton in the fourth round.

“However, with Covid causing financial problems throughout world football and Arsenal’s chances of qualifying for next season’s Champions League looking shaky at best, Arteta may need to let his prize asset go to strengthen the squad ahead of next season, according to The Times.”

Owing to the loss against Liverpool, Arsenal remain ninth on the Premier League table and if Villa manage to win their games in hand then the Gunners will slide further down.

Naturally, finishing in the top-four is now a distant dream so the only way for Arsenal to get back into the Champions League is to win the Europa League this time around. But if they fail to even do that then selling players like Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe will become a very realistic possibility.

Bukayo Saka is primarily a right winger but can also play as a full-back as well as a midfielder. And this versatility will make him a really high-valued transfer target should Arsenal decide to sell him in the summer.

Mikel Arteta will definitely not want to part ways with the 19-year-old but if he’s asked to generate most of his transfer funds then the manager will have to cash in on Saka.

Nicolas Pepe plays in the same position as Saka but the Ivorian will not fetch a very handsome transfer amount which is why the club’s management seem to have shortlisted Bukayo Saka.

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Manchester United legend Andy Cole accuses Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta of ‘disrespecting’ Alexandre Lacazette

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Former Manchester United striker Andy Cole has accused Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta of disrespecting Alexandre Lacazette by not starting the striker against Manchester City last weekend.

 

Lacazette was left out of the Gunners’ starting line-up, with Arteta favouring winger Willian, though the France striker replaced the Brazilian on 69 minutes.

The decision not to start Lacazette irked Cole, however.

“I think he is being disrespectful to Lacazette,” Cole said

“Willian is not a centre-forward. If you have got a centre-forward on the bench, who is your top goalscorer as well, to turn around and say: ‘Look, I am going to play Willian as the centre-forward, you sit on the bench and watch him play centre-forward…’ I think that is very disrespectful.”

After the final whistle, Arteta was questioned about the decision to leave Lacazette out of the starting line-up, and the Spaniard explained: “We need to have the versatility to play in different formations, occupying different spaces.

“It was a game for [Willian], the way City plays and the way they track the opponents and the spaces that can be used.

“He was really convinced as well. It was obviously really hard to leave two strikers on the bench, but it was a tactical decision.”

 

 

 

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