Mikel Arteta reveals he has told wantaway Arsenal star to change his mind on his future

Mikel Arteta's Arsenal side powered to a 3-0 win over Fulham at Craven Cottage
Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side powered to a 3-0 win over Fulham at Craven Cottage (Picture: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has revealed he has urged Rob Holding to change his mind over his Arsenal future, amid speculation the English centre-half is keen on leaving the north London club.

The 24-year-old struggled to recapture his best form after returning to fitness last Septbember following nearly a year out with a cruciate knee ligament injury.

Arteta bolstered his defence this summer with the addition of Gabriel Magalhaes, while William Saliba returned from his loan spell at Saint-Etienne. David Luiz also signed a new deal in the summer, while Pablo Mari has also joined on a permanent basis from Flamengo.

Despite boasting a wealth of options, Arsenal began their season at Fulham on Saturday amid a defensive crisis with five of their eight senior centre halves injured.

Holding, who has been linked with a loan move to Newcastle, stepped into the breach alongside Gabriel and Kieran Tierney and gave a commanding performance, picking up from where he left off in the Community Shield win over Liverpool a fortnight ago.

Rob Holding impressed at the heart of the Arsenal defence against Fulham on Saturday
Rob Holding impressed at the heart of the Arsenal defence against Fulham on Saturday (Picture: Getty)

Asked about Holding’s future after a convincing 3-0 victory, Arteta said: ‘I said to him, ‘Change your mind because you’re not going anywhere’.

‘Rob stands for every value we want at the football club. He had a really difficult time but he trained & pursued his dream to play for this football club.

‘Why would I have to let him go? You’re already playing so what else do you want?’

While Holding’s future is likely to remain a matter of conjecture, despite Arteta’s remarks, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang appears destined to confirm he will be staying put.

The Gabon international has less than a year remaining on his current contract and again underlined his importance to his side with the goal that confirmed three points on the opening day of the new season.

Asked about the likelihood of the Arsenal captain signing a new deal imminently, Arteta added: ‘I think I am really positive we’re going to get it done very soon. Hopefully in the next few days, we can get some news.’

MORE: Alexandre Lacazette insists he is happy at Arsenal after victory over Fulham

MORE: Mikel Arteta praises unsung Arsenal hero Mohamed Elneny against Fulham and reacts to Gabriel’s debut display

 

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