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Sambi Lokonga Arsenals New Recruit Is A Natural Leader According To Anderlechts New Manager

According to Anderlecht’s sporting director, Arsenal now have a ‘natural leader’ in their squad after signing Albert Sambi Lokonga.
The Gunners made their second summer acquisition, spending PS17 million on the defensive midfielder who was captain of Anderlecht last season, following full back Nuno Tavares.
Arsenal’s head coach, Mikel Arteta, is hoping to restructure his squad in order to reclaim a top-four berth, and Peter Verbeke, who sanctioned Lokonga’s move to the Emirates, says the Gunners have one of their ‘top talents’ who leads by example.
Anderlecht president Peter Verbeke described new Arsenal midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga as a “natural leader” after his PS17 million transfer. “Sambi of course is a very good player,” he told Sky Sports News.
‘He is one of our academy’s most promising young players.’
He can play as a defensive midfielder as well as a box-to-box midfielder.
He has grown tremendously in his time at the club, particularly in the last two seasons.
‘Sambi is an excellent ball player.’
His technical ability in small areas is exceptional, and he can pass both short and long distances.
‘Of course, Sambi was the captain of a very young Anderlecht club.
‘On and off the field, he was still a natural captain and leader, and he is someone who I would describe as very open-minded.’
At the age of 21, Lokonga led Anderlecht in his fourth professional season. The defensive midfielder is versatile and will provide technical skill as well as leadership. Adjusting to life in the Premier League may be difficult for any player, but Verbeke believes Anderlecht’s schooling prepares its players for the top level of football and projected him to thrive just as pupils Romelu Lukaku did.
‘I think he’ll fit with incredibly well in a new club because of his technical skills,’ he added. ‘I don’t think he’ll have any problems adjusting.’
‘Of course, the Premier League is a higher level than the Belgian league, but I believe the guys who were nurtured at Anderlecht, such as Youri Tielemans and Romelu Lukaku, settled in well since they received a excellent education at the Anderlecht academy.’
‘As a result, I expect Sambi to do the same.’
The Belgium Under-21 international made his debut in December 2017 for Belgian First Division A side Anderlecht, and played 37 times in all competitions last season, scoring three goals.
Mikel Arteta, Arsenal’s manager, described his new signing as “extremely bright” and “mature.” The 21-year-old will wear the No. 21 shirt.
Arteta praised him as “educated and mature” when he was given the number 23 shirt at Arsenal.
‘Albert is a very bright player who has demonstrated a high level of maturity in his performances throughout his career.’
Vincent Kompany and his Anderlecht coaching staff have done an excellent job with him.
‘I know Vincent well, and he always praises Albert and the excellent impact he has had on Anderlecht in recent seasons.’
‘We’re certain Albert is ready for the next step in his development, and we’re excited to welcome a new player to our squad with Albert’s quality and presence,’ said the club.

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