“He also does things that I don’t like” - Didier Deschamps explains lack of playing time for Arsenal defender William Saliba at national team

Arsenal defender William Saliba hasn
Arsenal defender William Saliba hasn't been a regular for France

France boss Didier Deschamps has reflected on Arsenal defender William Saliba's lack of game time for the national team.

Saliba has been a mainstay at the heart of the Gunners defence. This season, the 23-year-old has helped his club keep 15 clean sheets in 38 appearances across competitions.

Deschamps, though, has said that things haven't gone as well for Saliba while playing for France. The Les Bleus boss highlighted that Saliba is not leading the pecking order at the moment (via Daily Express):

"He is having a good season, but he also does things that I don't like so much. For France, he has limited game time, but when he plays, that hasn't necessarily gone well. The hierarchy doesn't favour him at the moment, but he is here."

The likes of Dayot Upamecano, Benjamin Pavard and others have gotten the nod ahead of Saliba. Even after Raphael Varane's international retirement, the Arsenal man hasn't been able to nail down a spot in his country's first XI. He has made only 12 appearances for the national team.

France, meanwhile, lost 2-0 to Germany in a friendly on March 23. Didier Deschamps' side take on Chile in another friendly on Wednesday (March 27).

Gabriel Magalhaes praises Arsenal teammate William Saliba for on-pitch connection

Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba have been the two regular centre-backs for Arsenal recently. The duo, with time, has former a formidable understanding.

Magalhaes has reflected on his connection with Saliba on the pitch, hailing the Frenchman, telling Stadium Astro (via football.london):

"We speak the same language. I am Brazilian, but I speak French. On the pitch, the communication is very important. We are good friends and sometimes I need to say, "Ah Ssaliba! for f**** sake'- he'll say it to me as well."

Magalhaes added:

"It's good for us. He understands me, and I understand him."

Magalhaes and Saliba will return to action for the Gunners on March 31 at Manchester City in the Premier League.

Arsenal are atop the league with 64 points from 28 games, level on points with second-placed Liverpool. Defending champions Manchester City are third, traling the top-two by a point.

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