Writer: Tim Stillman
Date:Friday February 15 2013
In his pre Blackburn press conference, Arsene Wenger spoke about the two left backs he began his season with. When discussing Kieran Gibbs' recent injury, the boss spoke about the need for him to put the ailment behind him psychologically, as much as anything.
'"He is determined to come back as quickly as possible," the manager said. "He`s a bit down because it was a big blow to him. It happened at the moment he played his best football.
"You always know that to play your best game, the confidence in your body is vital. As long as nothing happens to you, you don`t even question yourself.
"As soon as that happens repeatedly, it`s a problem for a top-level sportsman. I hope he will get over that very quickly. It gets you down. It`s difficult to be injured every time you play at your best.
"This is always a good period to build up the strength of a player - when he is injured. We have some experience in doing that and I am confident he will come back even stronger, but it will take him a while to get his complete confidence back in his body."
Meanwhile, Wenger reasons that he sent Santos on loan to build confidence. Interestingly, he suggested that the Brazilian may have a better chance of reincarnating himself at the Gunners as a winger,
"He moved because he'd lost a bit of confidence and he needs to play," Wenger said. "He's a guy who's a very good football player, but he didn't get enough games.
"He's more at ease in my opinion on the left of midfield, where there's a lot of competition. He will be back at the end of July, and of course he can have a future at Arsenal. That depends as well on the ins and outs during the summer."
Santos made his debut for Gremio last night, alongside fellow debutants Adriano and Hernan Barcos, fellow new acquisition Welliton was on the bench, but the Brazilian side stumbled to a 2-1 home defeat to Chilean champions Hauchipato.
Date:Friday February 15 2013
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Stats: Arsenal v West Brom (Monday May 25 2015)
Audio - Progress Pleases Wenger (Sunday May 24 2015)
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