Press conference

Arteta on... Nketiah, Mavropanos, Saliba

While William Saliba secured a loan move to Nice in January, Eddie Nketiah remained at the club but has found first-team minutes hard to come by.

So what is the latest on the young duo? And how are we keeping an eye on Dinos Mavropanos' development? This is what Mikel Arteta said when he faced the media on Wednesday:

on Nketiah’s lack of minutes…
Well, when we’re talking about management, this is one of the hazards to leave someone like Eddie out of the squad, but at the moment everybody has been fit and we have so many options upfront. But it hurts as well because of how Eddie behaves and trains every day and because he’s a player from our academy, but he will have his chance. He needs to be patient and he’s showing no signs of lacking attitude or anything like that, it’s the complete opposite. He’s a joy to work with and he deserves minutes and if he doesn’t get it, it’s just my fault.

on whether there’s a risk that a lack of minutes could damage his development…
Yeah, there is because he needs to play and we’ve been wanting to use him a little bit more on some occasions and we didn’t. To be fair, when he’s played, he’s played well, but at his age and for what he’s done the last two or three seasons, he needs more minutes. It’s something we have to talk about openly and make the right decision.

on William Saliba and Dinos Mavropanos…
We’re having meetings very often to assess what they’re doing and obviously we’re getting all the information and watching their games because I want to keep a very close eye on what they’re doing. We were talking yesterday for example with Ben Knapper, who is our loan manager, who is in charge of monitoring everything we are doing, and we are in contact with the players. Let’s see. It’s good news that they are playing and it’s good news that they have the possibility to have a lot of minutes because that’s going to give us a much better perception of where they are and how we can use them.

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