Rob Holding has taken another huge stride in his recovery towards a first team comeback, getting another 90 minutes under his belt with Arsenal’s Under-23s.
Rob Holding nearing first team return after Under-23s display
The 23-year-old suffered an ACL injury back in December 2018 against Manchester United, undergoing surgery before starting his rehabilitation process.
Now, getting more games under his belt, it would appear he’s closing in on a return for Unai Emery’s side – a huge boost that could help clamp down on the club’s present defensive weaknesses.
Arsenal’s Under-23s played against Leicester City in the Premier League 2, winning 2-1 at the Emirates. Playing the full games, Holding featured in central defence for Steve Bould’s side, impressing with good positional awareness and key interceptions that laid the foundations for the victory.
Can Holding help solve Arsenal's defensive riddle?
Fans will be hoping it’s the latest sure-fire signal that Holding is closing in on a first team return, with David Luiz struggling to impress since making the summer switch.
The Brazilian was found wanting against Liverpool, getting done for pace time and time again as his positional vulnerabilities and rashness was exposed.
Against Tottenham, he also struggled to cover himself in glory, getting sucked in to midfield through ball watching that enabled Christian Eriksen to coast through on goal for Spurs’ opener.
For all their attacking capabilities, Arsenal’s defensive weaknesses have inhibited them from making a stronger start to the season, with Rob Holding’s return offering Emery another option to explore in an attempt to plug the gap.
His return could not come at a better time as Europa League action looms this week, meaning Arsenal’s fixture list will become more congested.
Their first game will see them travel to Frankfurt on Thursday, before a Carabao Cup clash with Nottingham Forest on September 24th.