Arsenal defender Rob Holding is ready to capitalise on mistakes from the likes of Laurent Koscielny and Shkodran Mustafi as he aims to secure a regular role at the heart of the Gunners defence.
Holding was a regular for the Gunners after the switch to the 3-4-3 formation during the backend of last season, and it appears that he is keen on earning a similar run this time around.
The 22-year-old looked out of sorts earlier in the season as he was outplayed against the likes of Leicester City and Liverpool, but he made an impressive comeback earlier this month versus Watford.
With Koscielny rested, Holding was slotted alongside Shkodran Mustafi on the day, and he was impressive in handling Troy Deeney despite not possessing a similar physique as his compatriot.
Speaking on Sport 360, Holding revealed his ambition to nail down a regular starting role with the Gunners, and he is keen to impress at every opportunity from now until the end of the season.
“I’d say the first half of the season was a bit in and out, with the cup competitions, and then since late January it’s been a real knuckle down, cracking on with it and doing what I need to do,” Holding told Sport360.
“The manager’s noticing it and against Watford I felt like I had a really good, solid game. He knows that I’m there, pushing, and any little mistakes from Koscielny and Mustafi or slight injuries, I want to be the first one that he’s looking to.”
On usual terms, Koscielny is likely to partner Shkodran Mustafi in central defence versus Stoke City on April 1, but given the club have a key Europa League quarter-final tie against CSKA Moscow four days later, it may not be a surprise, if Holding starts once more.
Holding does have the tendency to get caught up further up the field as evidenced in the Forest defeat in the FA Cup, but the Englishman has also shown that he can come up with the perfect game as well, like the FA Cup final last term.
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