‘Finally free’ – Leicester’s Wesley Fofana hints at Saliba-Arsenal problems following loan exit

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Leicester City star Wesley Fofana has this evening taken to social media to congratulate William Saliba on securing a move away from Arsenal. His message, though, will no doubt come as a concern for the Gunners.

WIMBLEDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: William Saliba of Arsenal U21 walks off from pitch after receiving red card during the EFL Trophy match between AFC Wimbledon and Arsenal U21 at Plough Lane on December 8, 2020 in Wimbledon, England. (Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images)

Nice switch

The major transfer news in England this evening of course came in the form of confirmation that Saliba had departed north London for the 2nd-half of the campaign.

In a post across the club’s social media platforms, Arsenal announced that their out-of-favour young stopper has returned to his home country with OGN Nice, on a 6-month loan:

Accompanying the Gunners’ announcement, meanwhile, was a statement on the part of technical director Edu, who appeared keen to reiterate that Saliba has a long-term future at the Emirates:

‘William Saliba is a player with a huge amount of talent and potential. We’re confident he will have a great career with us but we must remember that he is still only 19 years old and has a lot of time ahead of him.’

‘So together with William, we have decided that spending the rest of the season on loan with Nice is the best way for him to develop.’

This of course comes with the Frenchman having failed to garner a single first-team appearance under Mikel Arteta over the opening half of the campaign.

‘Free’

As outlined above, however, if the latest social media activity on the part of Wesley Fofana is anything to go by, then the relationship between Saliba and Arsenal may not be quite as rosy as Edu this evening attempted to make it out to be.

Fofana, who has shone over the early months of his time in the Premier League with Leicester City, is known to be a close friend of the 19-year-old, with the pair having developed alongside one another at Saint-Etienne.

As such, it feels safe to assume that Fofana and Saliba kept in touch regarding their respective early experiences of English football.

In turn, it will no doubt come as a concern for Arsenal to hear of the Foxes standout inferring that his compatriot was essentially imprisoned in north London.

In a post on his official Instagram account, as showcased below, Fofana reacted to Saliba’s Emirates exit with the simple claim: ‘He is finally free’:

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Liverpool FC 16 17 33
2 Manchester United FC 16 9 33
3 Leicester City FC 17 10 32
4 Tottenham Hotspur FC 16 14 29
5 Manchester City FC 15 11 29
6 Everton FC 16 6 29
7 Aston Villa FC 15 13 26
8 Chelsea FC 17 11 26
9 Southampton FC 16 6 26
10 West Ham United FC 17 3 26
11 Arsenal FC 17 1 23
12 Leeds United 17 -3 23
13 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 17 -6 22
14 Crystal Palace FC 17 -7 22
15 Newcastle United FC 16 -8 19
16 Burnley FC 15 -11 16
17 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 17 -7 14
18 Fulham FC 15 -10 11
19 West Bromwich Albion 17 -28 8
20 Sheffield United FC 17 -21 2
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 13
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 12
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 11
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 11
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 11
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 10
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 10
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 8
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 8
Rashford, Marcus Manchester United FC 7
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 7
Lacazette, Alexandre Arsenal FC 7
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 6
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 6
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion FC 6
Abraham, Tammy Chelsea FC 6
Grealish, Jack Aston Villa FC 5
Firmino, Roberto Liverpool FC 5
Barnes, Harvey Leicester City FC 5
Soucek, Tomas West Ham United FC 5

Source: 101greatgoals.com