William Saliba: Arsenal defender joins Marseille on loan to 'continue development'

William Saliba joined Arsenal in 2019 but will now go out on his third loan spell back in his native France; the 20-year-old, who was loaned to Saint-Etienne and Nice, joins Marseille for the season with Arsenal technical director Edu calling the move "very important for his development"

William Saliba spent last season on loan at Nice (AP)
Image: William Saliba spent last season on loan at Nice

Arsenal defender William Saliba has joined Ligue 1 side Marseille on a season-long loan.

The 20-year-old centre-back spent six months on loan at Nice last season, making 22 appearances.

Arsenal signed Saliba from Saint-Etienne for a fee in the region of £27m back in 2019, but was then loaned back to the French club for the 2019/20 campaign.

He is yet to make a competitive appearance for Arsenal, and though he was handed the No 4 shirt last season, he was not included in Mikel Arteta's squads for the Premier League or Europa League.

After his latest loan spell was confirmed, Arsenal's technical director Edu said it was best for Saliba to spend another season away from the club.

"Together with William, we have decided it will be good for his continued development to spend another season on loan," Edu said.

"William joined us as an 18-year-old, and he is still only 20, so he is still developing all the time.

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"William is a player with strong natural ability and next season has the potential to be really beneficial for him at Marseille, a good club. To play another season in Ligue 1 will be very important for his development.

"We will of course be keeping in close contact with William during the season and wish him all the best in France with Marseille."

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