Marseille boss Sampaoli admits he wants to keep Arsenal defender Saliba

Marseille boss Sampaoli admits he wants to keep Arsenal defender Saliba

Olympique Marseille boss Jorge Sampaoli admits he wants to keep William Saliba.

On-loan Arsenal defender Saliba has helped Marseille into pole position for Champions League qualification behind runaway champions Paris Saint-Germain, featuring in all but one league match ahead of their final two games of the top-flight season.

The 21-year-old is yet to make his Arsenal debut and will face a battle to dislodge Ben White and Gabriel in Gunners manager Mikel Arteta's defensive plans.

Sampaoli said: "William's progress is linked to his development this season and the maturity he now has and his playing time.

"He is now consistent, he's grown up as a player. In relation to his situation at the club, I hope that there is a possibility for us to retain a player like him, who knows the team.

"But I don't know if it depends on OM, William or Arsenal. I don't know the possibilities in this case."

Former Saint-Etienne prospect Saliba, who joined Arsenal for £27million in the summer of 2019, has said he is open to speaking to his parent club about his future and potentially staying at Marseille.