David Luiz signs new Arsenal deal as four players extend stay

By Sports Desk June 24, 2020

David Luiz has signed a new one-year contract with Arsenal, who have extended Dani Ceballos' loan and agreed permanent deals with Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares.

A pre-season signing from Chelsea, David Luiz has endured mixed form with the Gunners and produced an error-strewn display in last Wednesday's loss to Manchester City before being sent off.

Despite that, technical director Edu described the experienced defender as a key player for the club, whose hopes of Champions League qualification suffered a further blow after Saturday's loss to Brighton and Hove Albion.

"David is a really important player for us," he told the club's official website. "He has played most of our matches this season and has been important for the team. 

"His passing, his communication with the team on and off the pitch. He helps everyone."


Fellow defenders Mari and Cedric will complete permanent moves from Flamengo and Southampton respectively when the transfer window opens next month on what the club describe as "long-term" deals.

Midfielder Ceballos, meanwhile, will remain on loan from Real Madrid until the end of the 2019-20 campaign.

Mari suffered an ankle injury against City and is set for at least a couple of months on the sidelines, while Cedric is close to making his debut after a facial injury.

Edu was delighted to retain their services, along with those of Ceballos.

"With Pablo we're all disappointed he got injured at Manchester City," he said. "Since Mikel [Arteta] arrived here he was asking for a central defender who was left-footed. 

"We were really pleased with Pablo - his behaviour, the way he is training, his mentality and his quality. Unfortunately, he has that injury but of course we are really happy to keep him for the future.

"Cedric is also going to be an important player. He has been unlucky with the injuries but he is close to being ready and gives us more strength in the right-back position. 

"We're also pleased Dani will finish the season here. He is making a good contribution and we look forward to him having a strong finish to the season."

Related items

  • Tierney going nowhere after proving to be a great Arsenal addition - Arteta Tierney going nowhere after proving to be a great Arsenal addition - Arteta

    Kieran Tierney is going nowhere after finally making his presence felt at Arsenal and proving to be "a great addition" to Mikel Arteta's team.

    Arsenal paid a reported £25million to sign left-back Tierney from Celtic last August but he did not make his debut until the end of September due to a groin problem.

    He then required surgery on his shoulder in December and was ruled out for three months, finally making his return when the Premier League resumed in June following its hiatus amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    Arteta has deployed a three-man defence in the Gunners' past three matches, with Tierney gaining plaudits for his performances in a slightly more advanced role on the left.

    Earlier this year the Scotland international was linked with a move away from Emirates Stadium due to his injury problems, but Arteta feels he can be an asset to Arsenal in the long term.

    "I'm very impressed with him since I joined, just before he started to play games as well, just how he was acting and working on his rehab," said Arteta ahead of the north London derby against Tottenham on Sunday.

    "Everyone loves him at the club and it's not a coincidence, he earns that every single day [with] the way he treats people, the way he walks around the club, the energy he brings to the place. Then with his performances, I'm delighted.

    "He's adapted really well, he's a player that gives you everything in every session and every game, and the quality as well that he's added, he's still so young, still things to improve obviously, but he's been a great addition to the team.

    "He's not going anywhere. He had a really difficult period because of the injuries, because he moved to a different city and a different context.

    "Back in Glasgow he was with a club that was winning all the time and he was very settled. It was a challenge for him and he's been dealing with that in the best possible way – with some difficulties, he needed the club to support him and his team-mates to make life easier for him.

    "We're all trying to help him, but you help him with pleasure because of what he brings and how willing he is all the time to work, improve and give his maximum to the team.

    "I think Kieran has adapted really, really well. Obviously it's a collective game and you need the right structure, the right people around you, the right players supporting you, to play in your best position obviously, and we are learning where he feels most comfortable and how he can have a bigger impact on the team. It's a process we are in."

    Arteta outlined the reason for his recent tactical shift, stating it was part through necessity and part due to a desire to add some unpredictability.

    "Well, we changed a little bit our formation in the last few weeks, just adapting to the injuries we have and the issues that occur around the team," he said.

    "We need to be more flexible and we need adaptability, and we cannot be so predictable as well.

    "I think it's very important that we are able to dominate different areas, different formations to improve as a team."

    Arsenal are unbeaten in five games since losing back-to-back matches against Manchester City and Brighton and Hove Albion upon the league's return.

    "I think you learn from every performance, from every reaction that situations bring to the team. The Brighton team again, I never faulted their effort or how willing they were or how hard they fought, it was about competing," said Arteta.

    "In this league you cannot switch off, you cannot give anything to an opponent. If we are able to do that in a consistent way, we will be very difficult to beat. I know that for a fact, and I can see the progression of it.

    "But without that, it doesn't matter what we do for 85 minutes, we will give many games away. That's the difference between top teams and teams that are not fighting for anything."

  • Brighton and Hove Albion 0-5 Manchester City: Sterling hits hat-trick as visitors run riot Brighton and Hove Albion 0-5 Manchester City: Sterling hits hat-trick as visitors run riot

    Raheem Sterling scored a hat-trick as Manchester City ran riot in a 5-0 away victory over Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League.

    England international Sterling made it six goals in five games, moving on to 27 strikes in all competitions – his best scoring tally in a single season.

    His opener and a goal from Gabriel Jesus, who ended Saturday's match with two assists, ensured City were in complete control by half-time after making six changes to their starting XI.

    Sterling netted again and Bernardo Silva scored before the hour mark as Brighton, who remain eight points clear of the bottom three, had no answer.

    Nine minutes before the end, a determined Sterling grabbed his third.

    Jesus and Eric Garcia had already missed early chances by the time Sterling put the visitors in front after 21 minutes.

    He cut inside from the left and impressively found the far corner from 20 yards after collecting Jesus' headed lay-off.

    Jesus had a shot deflected onto the crossbar by Brighton defender Lewis Dunk and also showed some great footwork to create a chance which Riyad Mahrez narrowly fired wide.

    But City were not to be denied, Jesus tapping in from under the crossbar after Rodri had helped on a Kevin De Bruyne corner a minute before the break.

    De Bruyne cannoned a free-kick off the post shortly after the restart and City soon got their third after 53 minutes when Sterling headed in Mahrez’s in-swinging free-kick from inside the six-yard box.

    It was four in the visitors' next attack when Mat Ryan could not hold Bernardo Silva's deflected effort and Jesus kept the ball alive to allow the Portugal international to convert a simple follow-up.

    Sterling’s hat-trick goal came in unusual fashion, as he forced his way past Dunk and Adam Webster before somehow creeping a header between Ryan's legs while he fell to the ground, with a scrambling Dan Burn then helping it over the line.
     

    What does it mean? City emphatically end away-day blues

    City had lost their last three Premier League away games, while they had scored just three times in their last six top-flight matches on their travels, despite an expected goals figure of 13.

    They had no issues bringing those poor runs to a welcome end with a victory that all but secures second place in the Premier League after Chelsea's defeat against Sheffield United.


    Jesus impresses with Aguero out

    Brazil international Jesus scored his first goal since lockdown against Newcastle United last time out and, apart from the superb Sterling, was excellent as City's other standout in this game.

    He scored one and assisted two as well as being a constant threat in a lively 63-minute outing. He now has 20 goals and 10 assists in a season where he has become even more important with Sergio Aguero out injured.


    Brighton backline a concern

    Convincing home defeats against Manchester United, Liverpool and now City mean Brighton are not yet mathematically safe. Facing Pep Guardiola's side is a formidable task at the best of times, but their defending did themselves no favours here, with City players constantly finding themselves unmarked close to goal.


    What's next?

    City will likely make changes ahead of their FA Cup semi-final with Arsenal when they host struggling Bournemouth in the Premier League on Wednesday, a day before Brighton could seal safety when they play away to Southampton.

  • Lampard slams Chelsea approach but not concerned about possible drop to fifth Lampard slams Chelsea approach but not concerned about possible drop to fifth

    Frank Lampard is not concerned with Chelsea potentially being fifth in the Premier League by the time they next play but warned his side they cannot repeat the approach taken in Saturday's 3-0 loss to Sheffield United.

    The Blues' Champions League ambitions were dented as a brace from David McGoldrick – one goal either side of Oli McBurnie's header – sealed all three points for the Blades

    Third-placed Chelsea were second best throughout at Bramall Lane, with a limp defeat meaning Leicester City and Manchester United can leapfrog them with wins over Bournemouth and Southampton respectively.

    Fifth may still be enough for Champions League football, depending on the outcome of Manchester City's appeal against their two-year ban from the competition.

    However, Lampard has no designs on putting Chelsea's fate in the hands of the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

    Lampard told Sky Sports: "What we have to do now with that game is put that to bed because the only thing that matters now is that we fight for top four and we're still in that race because of how we've been this season. We have to put this game away very quickly, but I learnt a lot.

    "They were stronger than us, I think you could feel that. We don't have a crowd so you hear every voice, all I could hear was Sheffield United voices.

    "They were stronger in that sense, and they're good players, they're a good team. We all know that this season. So if you come here and perform below par collectively as we did, it's going to happen."

    However, Lampard is not focusing on where Chelsea could be in the table come their next game against relegated Norwich City on Thursday, which is followed by the FA Cup semi-final with United and the Blues' final two league matches versus champions Liverpool and Wolves.

    "That's the reality of it but I'm not concerned so much about top four today," Lampard replied when asked about dropping to fifth. 

    "All I do is sit and watch all the games on TV and consider where we're at and what we want to do, because, of course, I want to get there, but today I'm concerned about how we performed and I learnt a lot about that.

    "I'm not thinking right now, 'We might be fifth, we might still be third or fourth.' I'm thinking that we'll see by the time these teams play and by the time we approach Norwich, and we cannot approach Norwich or Manchester United or Liverpool and Wolves in the same vein as we did today."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.