Arsne Wenger has explained his decision to keep Sead Kolasinac out of the team for Ainsley Maitland-Niles on Friday as the Gunners faced Liverpool at the Emirates stadium.
The Arsenal manager has received criticism on a couple of occasions already this season for naming what is perceived to be the wrong line-up for big games.
Back in August, new signing Alexandre Lacazette was dropped from the starting eleven which faced Liverpool at Anfield, prompting rumours that the French striker was not happy with the manager’s treatment, not too long after his move from Lyon.
And on Friday, it was the turn of another new signing Sead Kolasinac to be omitted from the starting line-up as Ainsley Maitland-Niles took his place at left-back.
But according to Wenger, the pace of the young Englishman is why Kolasinac had to settle for a place on the bench.
“His pace is the main reason why he [Maitland-Niles] played and I think as well his recovery runs are very good, he has shown that a few times,” the Arsenal manager said
“He came back and I think it’s a positive game, he is 20 years old and what he showed in a game of that stature is very good. It was a big test [against Mohamed Salah], but I think successful, it was a successful performance from him.”