Date: 16th January 2021 at 9:00am
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Mikel Arteta has lauded the impact of Arsenal’s David Luiz, who returned to action against Newcastle, off the pitch as he spoke about the Brazilian prior to the Premier League clash with Crystal Palace.

The defender joined the club back during the summer of 2019 on a free transfer from Chelsea and has already lifted the FA Cup with the Gunners.

Speaking in an interview, the Spaniard said the 33-year-old, who has been labelled a ‘PlayStation player’, is a role model for the young guns as he praised the impact he’s made with the younger members of the squad.

Arteta said: “He is one of the leaders in the dressing room. He is one of the most experienced players, he has won everything in the game. He is so good with the young kids. When you look at people who can help and be a role model, he is always with them, he is always supporting them, giving them confidence and advice. It is great to have someone like him around.” (via Arsenal)

Whilst no one has ever doubted the leadership qualities of Luiz, Arteta’s comments has shown a recurring theme from within the Gunners’ first-team. Plenty of the squad are praised for being ‘leaders’ within the dressing room, however, their lack of consistency is quite telling.

Granit Xhaka and Hector Bellerin have been commended for having some sort of influence off the pitch. But, when you analyse their own performance levels, it leaves a lot to be desire.

Xhaka himself has been up and down since joining in 2016 and was lambasted following the north London derby back in December by Jamie Redknapp and Gary Neville. It seems he’s turned a corner with his recent displays, but how long will that last? Following his recall to the Spain squad back in November, Bellerin seemingly forgot how to take a throw-in and has now returned to form.

Speaking well of a player’s actions off the pitch when they can barely maintain consistency on it is foolish to say the least. It’s the main problem with this Arsenal squad and is probably why the club have been so poor for so long.

In other news, Arsenal held talks with a Premier League manager’s agent over a move when Arteta was under pressure, according to reports,