Arsenal technical director Edu has spoken out on the club’s position regarding young centre-back William Saliba.
The 19-year-old is yet to play for the Gunners this season, despite not being allowed to leave on loan again.
Saliba joined the north London club from St Etienne 18 months ago, and was initially loaned back to Saint-Etienne for the year.
It was thought that he would play an important role this season after impressing in Ligue 1, but despite Arsenal ’s woes at the back, Mikel Arteta has not given him a place in his side.
The Spainiard admitted last month that the situation had left him “fed up”, and insisted that Saliba was in need of a “transition year”.
He added: “At the moment, with the amount of central defenders we have in the team, we had to leave him out of the squad, which is painful. Now we have some injuries and we could have used him but this is part of the profession.”
So amid talk of a potential loan move in January, Edu has revealed what the club’s plans are with regards to Saliba.
“Maybe he needs a little more time,” said the Brazilian.
“He’s a bright talent. We need to talk with him and Mikel to plan for next year.”
Meanwhile, chief executive Vinai Venkatesham admitted that the whole club was disappointed with the current situation they found themselves in, but gave Arteta his backing to turn things around.
“We made another significant investment, following on from significant investments over the last two summers, to get this club back to competing where we want to be,” Venkatesham said.
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“Behind the scenes, everybody is disappointed, but they’re also being quite measured. We working extremely hard.
“Everyone is sticking together to turn it around. We absolutely do believe results will come. We’re not ignoring what we’re seeing on the pitch.”