Arsenal

“We’re talking about them alongside Ferdinand and Vidic” – Jamie Carragher lavishes praise on Arsenal defensive duo

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has lavished praise on Arsenal duo William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes for their stunning performances in the Premier League this season.

The pair are responsible for the best defensive record in the league, having conceded just 28 goals in 37 games, keeping 18 clean sheets so far.

Jamie Carragher’s comments on Arsenal defensive duo

Appearing on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football alongside Gary Neville, Carragher pointed out the significance of having a solid centre-back pairing to win the league. To prove his point, he singled out Arsenal’s defensive duo, and even likened their impact to legends from the past.

He said,

“If (William) Saliba and Gabriel (Magalhaes) stay together for the next three or four years, we’re talking about them alongside Ferdinand and Vidic, Carvalho and Terry. I think those two could go alongside some of the best partnerships we’ve seen in the Premier League.”

Carragher, who is one of the Premier League’s greats himself, compared Saliba and Gabriel to two of the most successful defensive pairings in history.

Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand played for Manchester United in the 2000s, starting together in a whopping 197 games, averaging 2.23 points per game, with 136 wins together. They helped fortify United’s status as one of the best teams in the modern era.

On the other hand, John Terry and Ricardo Carvalho helped Jose Mourinho make a mark in his early days in English football as manager of Chelsea. Together, the pair started 158 games, averaging 2.19 points per game and recording an impressive 106 wins.

The Gunners duo will have to play together for several more years to match the level of the aforementioned legends.

Gabriel and Saliba’s partnership so far

Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba have started 78 matches together for Arsenal and have recorded an impressive 53 wins, averaging 2.17 points per game. The pair have also combined for one goal during their time playing together.

Saliba and Gabriel in action for Arsenal. (Getty Images)

Overall, 23-year-old Saliba has made 82 appearances for the Gunners over the years, scoring five goals and providing two assists. With age still on his side, there is a big chance he will remain with the Gunners through his prime years.

Gabriel, on the other hand, has played twice the amount at 167 appearances for the club, recording 15 goals and one assist. At 26, he is still yet to hit his prime and could form one of the greatest partnerships in history if they both decide to stay on.

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