Wright names Arsenal quintet who have grown in ‘character’

Date published: Saturday 19th March 2022 4:52 - Dan Butterfield

Arsenal legend Ian Wright

Arsenal legend Ian Wright has named a quintet of current Gunners stars who have grown in character this season following their win over Aston Villa.

The Gunners beat Steven Gerrard’s side on Saturday afternoon as Bukayo Saka’s first-half strike proved to be the difference between the two sides.


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Saka’s strike takes him into double figures so far this season and whilst Wright has admitted they will need more goals from other places going forward, he was quick to praise Saka and the Gunners defence.

Speaking to DAZN (via The Mirror), Wright said:”Long may it continue. We’re going to need more goals from other places, as well, but you have to mention the defence.

“Bernd Leno did fantastically well when he came [into the team] today.

“Villa, obviously, didn’t put him under as much pressure as I thought they would. But defensively, midfield – everything was so solid. Arsenal winning games away from home like that is brilliant to see, it’s really good to see.”

Mikel Arteta has built a young, vibrant side at Arsenal this season but they have been criticised over their lack of leaders in the squad.

Club captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had a public fall-out with Arteta earlier this season, and was subsequently allowed to leave on a  free to Barcelona.

Alexandre Lacazette has been given the captaincy until the end of the season but there is doubt over his long-term future as his contract is up in the summer.

However, Wright has hit back at the critics and named five of the current squad who have impressed him this season.

“A lot of pundits have been very joyous in talking about Arsenal and how weak they are, [having] no leaders. Look at them now… this Arsenal team are a young side, we’re starting to see characters grow in the side.

“We’re starting to see people like Ben White, Gabriel [Magalhaes], Kieran Tierney, [Martin] Odegaard, Thomas Partey. We’re talking about five, six, seven, eight players are getting an eight out of 10 every week. That’s what you have to do.

“And then it’s up to the owners and the manager and the recruitment to bolt on the kind of players that are going to fit in the squad and continue to help them improve.”

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