Garth Crooks salutes ‘brilliance’ of Arsenal star Bukayo Saka after Watford win

Garth Crooks singled out Bukayo Saka for special praise after the Arsenal forward’s fine performance helped the Gunners to claim a 3-2 win at Watford on Sunday.

Saka scored one and set up another for Mikel Arteta’s men as the north London side claimed a vital win in the race for Champions League qualification via a top-four finish.


The 20-year-old England international set up Martin Odegaard for Arsenal’s early opener and then put the north Londoners ahead again in the 30th minute with a superb strike after Cucho Hernandez’s equaliser for the hosts.


Gabriel Martinelli made it 3-1 to Arteta’s side before Moussa Sissoko netted what turned out to be a late consolation for Roy Hodgson’s men.

Saka has been in top form for Arsenal lately and has scored two goals and made one assist in his last three outings for the north London side.


Former Tottenham star Crooks picked out Saka in his team of the week following his sparkling display against the Hornets on Sunday.

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Writing in his column for BBC Sport, Crooks said: “If you’re a Tottenham fan it must be excruciating watching your local rivals continue to pick up points as they aim to secure a Champions League spot.


“Arsenal’s most recent performance against Watford was enough to win all three points but they still show signs of frailty at the back. The reason the Gunners are still flirting with a top-four place is due largely to the brilliance of Bukayo Saka.


“The England international has grown tremendously since he played in the European championships and seems to glide through games these days.


“If Arsenal can’t provide Champions League football for the youngster then I suggest he finds it somewhere else. Talent like this shouldn’t hang around.”


Saka has now scored nine goals and made five assists in 30 games in all competitions for the north London side.


Saka also earned praise from his manager Mikel Arteta after the game for his attitude and application at Arsenal.

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“What he is already doing is phenomenal and he needs that room, you know?” Arteta told his post-match news conference when asked about Saka.


“Don’t read too much, do what you do. Football is his priority in life and you can see that every day in training and he needs to continue to behave and live the way that he is doing.”


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