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Bukayo Saka reveals biggest challenge he’s faced at Arsenal this season

Bukayo Saka has admitted he’s still working out how to combat being man-marked by two players in most of Arsenal’s games.

The 22-year-old’s stock in world football has risen exponentially over the past 18 months, owing to a number of sensational displays on the wing for Arsenal and England.

Saka has scored four goals and contributed five assists in Arsenal‘s 2023/24 Premier League campaign to date, but admitted after the 1-0 win over Brentford on Saturday – a game that saw him lay on Kai Havertz’s 89th minute winner up – that he’s coming to terms with opposition players doubling up on him.

“I feel like a lot of games I’m facing a double team with two guys on me and it’s the same for Gabi [Martinelli],” Saka told reporters. “It’s happening in every game. I keep watching all my games back trying to find a solution, what I can do better.

“In the end, I just feel like I need to understand that this is how it’s going to be this season and I just need to deal with it and keep finding a way like I did today. That’s what I need to keep doing.

Bukayo Saka

Bukayo Saka has taken a number of knocks from opposition defenders in recent months / Visionhaus/GettyImages

“The managers know a bit more how we play and it’s up to us to adapt in each game and to find a solution. Of course, each game is different but we know that we can be a lot better. We’re especially working on breaking teams down, but we’re still getting really good results and we’re top of the league. So we can be really happy.”

The weekend win sent Arsenal to the top of the Premier League table ahead of Manchester City and Liverpool – the pair played out a 1-1 draw in Saturday’s early kick-off – but Saka’s attention will quickly switch back to securing a place in the last 16 of the Champions League.

The Gunners are in pole position of Group B after winning three of their four games and can seal their place in the knockout stages by beating Lens at the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday. Should Mikel Arteta’s side win, they will avenge the 2-1 defeat they suffered in the reverse fixture back in October.


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