The star player for Arsenal, Bukayo Saka, is unfazed by the violent treatment he has received from rivals this year.
To discuss some of the tackles, Arsenal has spoken with the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL). Saka is also gaining knowledge from a mentor on the Arsenal team.
The 21-year-old forward for Arsenal, Bukayo Saka, revealed that he admired former star Alexis Sanchez growing up. After receiving harsh treatment from opponents this season, Saka is now drawing inspiration from Sanchez’s tenacity.
Saka, who graduated from the Hale End academy, has made a significant contribution to Arsenal’s unexpected run for the title, scoring 10 goals and dishing out nine assists so far this season. Saka has had a considerable physical toll as a result of his efforts since making the first squad at Emirates Stadium, even though his contribution to the team goes beyond numbers.
Saka has experienced numerous hard confrontations as a result of his style of play, which typically entails dribbling past defenders. As a result of being fouled 45 times this season, Saka is presently tied for seventh place on the Premier League’s list of most targeted players. Strangely, only four yellow cards have been displayed for tackles on him, which averages out to one foul, despite the significant number of fouls against him.
Jack Grealish, the second-most fouled player in the league with 4.9 fouls, typically receives 4.9 yellow cards for each foul, which is a substantial decrease from this average. Saka doesn’t appear overly disturbed by Arsenal’s communication with the Professional Game Match Officials Board (PGMOL) citing the brutal treatment he has experienced.
Saka stated in an interview with The Evening Standard that he doesn’t want to complain about the fouls he has experienced since it would be ineffective. He noted that Arsenal has already spoken with officials about the matter, and he thinks they should keep trying to come up with a solution.
“With the way I play, I’m certain to draw attention. Alexis Sanchez was someone I grew up watching a lot. He was a unique player, and I admired a lot of his qualities. One of his traits was that he always got back up and continued to fight. You could say that I stole that from him, but I also have my own dreams and aims. That’s part of my motivation as well.
Saka revealed that Arteta has urged his teammates to refrain from passing the ball to him in crowded situations in order to protect him as they go closer to the title run-in in addition to contacting the PGMOL. In order to lessen the amount of pressure and physical contact he experiences from opponents, Saka added that Arteta had spoken with him about the type of balls he receives as a winger and given him the advice to avoid getting the ball on the touchline with his back to the defender.
“I believe he is referring to the kinds of balls where I don’t have much room to maneuver and the defender may shut me down quickly and be incredibly aggressive,” the player said.