Arsenal’s "gladiator" defender and "tough dog" impressing on loan

Signed in January 2018 by Arsene Wenger, the Greek centre-back made his debut against Manchester United later that season.

Having now worked his way back from injury and into the squad, Mavropanos has started the last five games.

And his current boss is thrilled what we've he's seen.

"He's our gladiator! He's a monster in terms of physique," Pellegrino Matarazzo said.

"And when he makes a mistake, he hums around some Greek swear words. I like that. He's just a tough dog."

Matarazzo's comments will be pleasing for Arteta who will no doubt be keeping a close eye on his two on-loan centre-backs.

The other is William Saliba. The French centre-back, who was expected by many to be a first team regular at the Gunners this season, moved to Nice on loan in January.

Saliba has made 10 appearances so far in Ligue 1 as he looks to sharpen his match skills and playing time.

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  • Both Saliba and Mavropanos will be keen to make successes of their loan spells with plenty of competition at the back for Arsenal.

    Gabriel Magalhaes was signed last summer while Pablo Mari has started Arsenal's last two league matches and looks to gain more time following a string of injuries.

    Arsenal also have Rob Holding and Callum Chambers on their books while David Luiz could also stay should the Gunners offer him a new contract.

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