Martin Keown claims Lucas Torreira bringing out best in Arsenal star
The Arsenal legend believes summer signing Lucas Torreira is bringing out the best in Granit Xhaka
Martin Keown has credited Lucas Torreira with bringing out the best in Arsenal star Granit Xhaka.
The Uruguay international completed a £26m move to Arsenal from Sampdoria in the 2018 summer transfer window, seeing off competition for the defensive midfielder’s signature.
Torreira completed a switch to Arsenal on the back of an impressive campaign in the World Cup after he helped Uruguay reach the quarter-finals before a 2-0 loss to France.
Arsenal manager Unai Emery used Torreira as a substitute in their opening games of the Premier League season as the Spanish head coach preferred Matteo Guendouzi and Granit Xhaka in the middle of the park.
The Gunners manager gave the South American his first start in the Premier League in Arsenal’s 2-0 home win against Watford before Torreira helped the north London side to ease to a 2-0 victory over Everton at The Emirates.
Arsenal recorded their sixth successive Premier League win thanks to a resounding 5-1 win over promoted side Fulham last weekend to hoist themselves up to fourth place in the table.
Xhaka’s performances have improved since Emery opted to partner Torreira alongside the Switzerland international.
And former Arsenal star Keown believes Torreira is helping to improve Xhaka in the middle of the park.
“Lucas Torreira has brought balance to the midfield,” Keown wrote in his Daily Mail column.
“He has freed Granit Xhaka to be more creative.”
Xhaka has been regularly criticised since his £33m move to Arsenal from Bundesliga outfit Borussia Monchengladbach in the 2016 summer transfer window.
The Swiss midfielder has earned a reputation for reckless tackles and amassed a poor disciplinary record at the north London side so far.
Xhaka has netted eight times in 108 games in all competitions over the past two and a half seasons at the Emirates Stadium.
The Arsenal star will be hoping to retain his starting spot alongside Torreira in the middle of the park when the Gunners take on Leicester City on Monday 22 October.