‘He’s the boss’ – Arsenal star has hailed Liverpool player for his aura

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Ahead of this summer’s European Championships, William Saliba has showered praise on Liverpool and Netherlands defender Virgil Van Dijk.

Arsenal defender Saliba has spoken highly of Van Dijk’s abilities at Liverpool and says he is attempting to replicate the Dutchman’s “aura” at Arsenal.

After winning the Premier League and Champions League with Liverpool and placing second to Lionel Messi in the 2019 Ballon d’Or, Van Dijk has emerged as one of the top defenders in the world in recent years.

Ahead of Euro 2024 in Germany, the Arsenal defender complimented the Liverpool captain’s dominant presence on the field in an interview with the French daily L’Equipe.

Saliba also acknowledged his own increasing impact in the defense for the Gunners.

Saliba said to L’Equipe:

“I’m not the guy who talks a lot, but I talk more and more. I’m making progress on this. In defense at Arsenal, I am one of the leaders. Van Dijk has aura, for example. He’s the boss, he orders everything. You feel that he scares the attackers. But I’m starting to feel the same way. I’m starting to see that the attackers feel fear. Sometimes when players are in your zone, they’re not having fun. And when there is a one-on-one and the player goes back, takes out the ball, flees the duel, that’s nice.”

Arsenal came close but once again finished 2nd to Man City.

The Arsenal defender has helped the Gunners challenge for the Premier League title two seasons in a row.

They have finished second to Manchester City both the times but the Gunners have improved in all areas of the pitch and particularly in defense, thanks to Saliba’s partnership with Gabriel.

Saliba has transformed the Arsenal defense

The French defender helped the Gunners keep 18 clean sheets in the 2023-24 season as they only conceded 29 goals in the 38 Premier League games.

Saliba is keen to demonstrate his abilities on the global arena, but it’s still unclear if he will start for France this summer.

His rise in the game has been impressive as he the 23-year-old defender has become one of the best players in the world in his position.

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