Granit Xhaka makes Sambi Lokonga claim Arsenal fans will love
Lokonga’s Arsenal stint
Arsenal would secure the services of Albert Sambi Lokonga during the 2021 summer transfer window.
The young midfielder was signed for Belgian outfit Anderlecht on a long-term contract.
Given that he was just 21 when he joined the club and had no experience in Europe’s top-five leagues, there was an expectation that Lokonga would be bedded in slowly at Arsenal.
And whilst that has happened to an extent, injury and suspension issues have led to Mikel Arteta calling upon Lokonga on a more regular basis than he would probably have liked at this stage.
The central midfielder has now featured 15 times for Arsenal, including in 13 of their Premier League ties.
Xhaka on Lokonga
And, with Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny expected to head off for around a month for the African Cup of Nations soon, Lokonga will be one of just two senior, natural central midfielders at the club along with Granit Xhaka.
However, Xhaka probably will not mind playing with the Belgian star on a regular basis as he has been full of praise for him recently.
In fact, the Swiss international has stated that Lokonga has a big future:
“With Thomas, every time he was in good shape he was out with small injuries, and I hope he stays first of all healthy without injury. I love to play with him. He is a great midfielder and an amazing, amazing, amazing guy. He is a guy who wants to improve, is coming in asking you questions and is open to learn. Sambi (Lokonga) is the same and he has a big future for one so young.”
In the same interview, Xhaka also stated that Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe and Gabriel Martinelli are three guys with big futures and big mentalities:
“People are going to talk about you whether it is good or bad things, but they are so humble, they want to improve, and it is so important to stay on this level because they are doing an amazing job. When you are young and everything is going well it feels great but it is important for them to be strong mentally when something is not going so well. There will be difficult times. If we take these three — Bukayo, Emile and Gabi Martinelli — they are three young guys with a big future and a big, big, big mentality.”
Quotes via The Athletic.
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