Cesc Fabregas raves over Arsenal man who could make massive strides and challenge duo
Arsenal legend Cesc Fabregas has been raving over a Gunners defender who could push the establishment for a regular starting role next season.
Jakub Kiwior arrived at The Emirates in the January transfer window in a £21million deal from Italian club Spezia but has so far struggled to make his mark with the first-team.
Indeed, the 21-year-old made just two substitute appearances in the Premier League, and one start in the Europa League, prior to Tuesday’s match against Chelsea.
With William Saliba injured and Rob Holding struggling in the Frenchman’s absence, Kiwior was handed his first league start by Gunners boss Mikel Arteta against a struggling Blues side.
And the Poland international gave a good account of himself despite switching from his usual left centre-back role to the right. Indeed, the ARsenal defence had a much more solid look about it then in the previous four games, when they conceded 11 times.
Despite having a limited role since joining, Fabregas believes Kiwior could follow a similar path to that of Saliba, who was continually sent out on loan before finally securing his starting berth.
Prior to the game with Chelsea, Fabregas told Sky Sports: “It’s a good call to have as well because apparently, from what I’ve heard, the boy is working really hard and training very well.
“He’s very fast and he’s young. They also need him for next year I’m sure, like Saliba when he went on loan.
“So now he needs games as well to know the players, to get to know each other, and I’m sure he will be an important player for the club.”
Fellow pundit Patrick Vieira added: “Losing Saliba has been a big one for them, because he was giving them this kind of physical presence.
“Against Manchester City, against Erling Haaland, it was really difficult for the two centre-backs and losing [Saliba] was the start of Arsenal losing games and conceding goals.”
And while the Gunners did not keep a clean sheet against Chelsea, a potential injury issue for Gabriel Magalhaes against the Blues could see Kiwior switch to the left centre-back role and partner Holding at the back for Sunday’s tough trip to Newcastle.
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