Arsenal star Hector Bellerin delighted fans by reportedly signing a new six-year deal with the club after rumoured interest from Spanish giants Barcelona had concerned supporters that the fan favourite would leave for La Liga.
The Catalan giants allowed Bellerin to join the Gunners as a 16-year-old in 2011, but must deeply regret their decision to allow an enormous talent to slip through their considerable pool of star youngsters.
Luis Enrique had reportedly lined up Bellerin after becoming dissatisfied with his options at right-back, especially after Dani Alves’s departure to Juventus in the summer.
However, Bellerin’s apparent new deal at the Emirates is a sign he wants to have a long career in London under the tutelage of Arsene Wenger, and whoever succeeds the Frenchman when he eventually retires.
And although the length of his deal is considerable, there is no doubting that the 21-year-old deserves his lucrative new contract.
As of the start of last season, Bellerin is unrivaled as a defender in terms of dribbles made (82) and while that is WhoScored’s standout impressive statistic, we’ve decided to dig a little deeper into last season’s totals for Bellerin to discover why he is so highly rated via Squawka.
Bellerin completed 866 forward passes in 2015/16, as well as creating 22 chances and making five assists.
To put this into perspective, Manchester City wide man Raheem Sterling, who obviously operates higher up the pitch and is expected to be more offensively involved than Bellerin, only managed 406 forward passes and achieved a mere two assists – albeit creating fifteen more chances than his counterpart.
Bellerin also won 47 tackles, which is thirteen more than title winning Leicester captain Wes Morgan in the same season.
The Arsenal star has a total which is also streets ahead of Tottenham defender Toby Alderweireld in terms of tackles won, with the Belgian only winning 32 despite playing two more games than Bellerin.
Arsene Wenger has a potential world superstar on his hands.
Callum Connolly, Pundit Arena.