Despite the physical hurdles from his opponents this season, Bukayo Saka has been playing remarkably well. He has been a key contributor to England’s unexpected surge toward a Premier League championship as a rising star for both Arsenal and the national team, which is still going strong as mid-March approaches.
Saka has so far contributed to 19 goals in the league, scoring 10 goals and dishing out nine assists. He now ranks third in the league, just behind forwards Erling Haaland and Harry Kane, both of whom are centers. He has consistently displayed a relentless blend of ingenuity and tenacity, and his superb performances have kept Arsenal five points clear of Manchester City.
The aforementioned, the aforementioned, and the aforementioned, a… He has, however, also been the subject of adversaries who have used a variety of physical techniques to try and lessen his influence. Even teams like Manchester City have attempted to tackle him violently, which led to Bernardo Silva getting sent off during their most recent match.
Saka had a rare show of rage after experiencing the same treatment against Aston Villa the next game. As a result, Mikel Arteta, the manager of Arsenal, declared that the club will look into any possible proof that Saka had been purposefully targeted in recent weeks.
Saka is currently the eighth most fouled player in the Premier League despite receiving 45 free kicks in his favor. However, Wilfried Zaha of Crystal Palace has received 64 free kicks, significantly surpassing this total. At the Emirates Stadium, some spectators are upset by the numerous fouls committed against Saka that go unpunished.
According to sources, Arsenal has been in constant contact with PGMOL, the organization that represents referees, over the issue of fouls being committed against Bukayo Saka. Saka hasn’t voiced his displeasure, though, because he doesn’t think it would change anything. He understands that his playing style will always make him a target for contact, therefore the emphasis should be on how many fouls he commits instead.
Saka’s peaceful disposition could be due to his background and his faith. He spends time taking photos and signing signatures for fans after events, and he studies the Bible every night. He is also renowned for his kindness. Saka was spotted chatting with fans and talking about his game during Monday’s awards night, which helped generate money for the Willow charity. He would rather receive accolades than be the object of a foul.
I just try to take care of myself and be as professional as I can, he remarked. “Eat well and get as much rest as I can. I try to learn as much as I can throughout my training, and I give it my all during competition. I entrust God with the rest.
“God has been looking for me. Some tackles, I might have been fortunate, but I wouldn’t describe it as luck. I have faith in God, and I’m in good hands.
“I’ve just been remaining in shape, and I’m hoping I can keep giving everything I’ve got for Arsenal on the field so we can be happy now at the end of the season.”
Arteta, as usual, told Saka to focus on his own controllable actions. The Spaniard believes Arsenal should be able to adapt their use of the ball to avoid the possibility of Saka being unfairly challenged.
Saka said, “I believe he’s referring to the kind of balls I get. “As a winger, for instance, if I received the ball on the touchline with the defender’s back to me, even if I were the defender, I would still rush in straight and quickly to close you down.
Naturally, there will be a great deal of pressure and contact. The kind of balls where I don’t have much room to maneuver and the defender can rapidly close me down and be really aggressive, I believe he is referring about.
“People will know me better now because I’ve played more and more football and more and more at higher levels, so they will understand my game better. Hence, they will prepare strategies to stop me, abuse me, and do other things like that.
“The majority of wingers experience this. When our other wingers play, most of them experience the same thing. I simply need to keep adapting and learn how to play one against one, two against one, three against one, or whatever it may be. Simply keep growing. The appeal of the game lies in this. Every week is always going to bring something new. It is about me attempting to unravel it and ultimately succeeding in winning the game.
Saka has risen quickly through Arsenal’s Hale End academy to become a major member of the team’s championship defense in just four years because to his tenacity and perseverance. In all 27 league games this season, he played for 2,320 minutes, which is a huge amount.
Saka believes he has not yet reached the number of goals and assists he set for himself in August, which he has kept a secret, despite his remarkable performance. Yet he is confident that if he keeps up his current pace, he will soon reach his goals. Saka will undoubtedly be included in Gareth Southgate’s most recent England team for matches against Italy and Ukraine later this month, given there are still 11 Premier League games left, in addition to a Europa League round of 16 second-leg match against Sporting CP on Thursday.
Saka pauses before responding when asked about his freshness, showing that in football, there is no stopping.
I’m just delighted to be on the field, I’d say mentally, he remarked. “If I had to choose between being hurt and being on the field, I would choose the field. When I was younger, if you had asked me where I wanted to be, I would have said on the field, competing at the top level every week while playing for Arsenal.
So, I’m glad. I just want to continue to push till the end of the season and then in the summer I can shut myself in my room and sleep for the rest of the summer.”