Martin Keown: What David Luiz needs to improve at Arsenal

Arsenal legend Martin Keown believes David Luiz needs to work on areas of his game

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff
Martin Keown
Ex-Arsenal defender Martin Keown (Photo: BT Sport)

Martin Keown says David Luiz needs “one-on-one work” with a defensive coach to iron out the flaws in the Arsenal defender’s game.

The Brazil international has endured a mixed start to his Arsenal career so far after Luiz completed an £8m move to the north London side from Chelsea FC on transfer deadline day last month.

Luiz, who spent two stints at Chelsea FC, impressed in Arsenal’s 2-1 victory over Burnley in his home debut in front of the Gunners supporters at The Emirates.

The 32-year-old was at fault for two of Liverpool FC’s goals in Arsenal’s 3-1 loss to Jurgen Klopp’s side at Anfield in their Premier League clash last weekend.

Luiz conceded a penalty after he was penalised for pulling Mohamed Salah’s shirt before the Egypt international produced a neat piece of trickery to evade the Brazilian for his second goal.

The summer signing will be hoping to retain his place in the Arsenal team for the visit of Tottenham Hotspur in the north London derby at The Emirates on Sunday afternoon.

Former Arsenal defender Keown expressed his concerns about Luiz ahead of the derby clash on Sunday afternoon.

“David Luiz needs one-on-one work with a defensive coach,” Keown told the Daily Mail. “That is what I would do if I was on the staff at Arsenal.

“Luiz is 32 but you are never too old to learn. When Arsenal signed the Brazilian from Chelsea, I feared it would come back to bite them. That is what happened at Anfield last week.

“Liability Luiz gave away a cheap penalty by pulling on Mohamed Salah’s shirt. He failed to anticipate the movement of the Egyptian, then his ego caused him to tug back Salah rather than wait to see if the Liverpool man would score.

“Later, he was made to look foolish on the wing by the same man. Luiz could not foul Salah because he had already been booked for giving away the spot-kick. But he committed, he went for the ball, it was all or nothing, and he got zilch. Salah skipped by him and scored.

“Luiz dealt with that situation all wrong and this has long been a habit. When defending, you have to make yourself favourite for the ball. Stay goal-side of your opponent. Don’t get too tight or over-commit. Give yourself the chance to drop off. That is what Virgil van Dijk does. Luiz didn’t and Salah exploited it.

“As a player, I would take things like this personally. I would not want to pick up the newspaper and read about how the man I was supposed to keep quiet took me to the cleaners. I’d find that embarrassing and I’d want to improve.”

Arsenal are in third place in the Premier League table and two points ahead of Mauricio Pochettino’s side.

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