Bukayo Saka: Mikel Arteta holds Gareth Southgate talks amid fears Arsenal star may suffer burnout at Euro 2020

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 (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
(POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Mikel Arteta has spoken to Gareth Southgate about fears Bukayo Saka could suffer from burnout at this summer’s Euros - but says the England manager is “brilliant” at looking after young players.

Saka is pushing for a place in Southgate’s 26-man squad, which is due to be announced on Tuesday, and Arsenal boss Arteta says it would be great for the teenager to make the cut.

The winger has, however, played the most minutes of any outfield player for Arsenal this season in the Premier League and it has sparked fears he could suffer from burnout at the Euros.

Arteta has admitted that is a risk with players, particularly after this hectic season, but he believes Southgate knows how to look after youngsters.

“There is a risk,” said Arteta. “I think the schedule that they have been through in the last two years has been crazy.

“He (Saka) has handled that situation really, really well. I know Gareth and he has been brilliant at managing them as well, and I spoke with him about it.

“We just hope that they do the right thing. But he is very determined to go and help his country, which is incredible at his age, and he needs to enjoy that because he has earned every right to be there. So, enjoy it and things would happen.”

A big positive boosting Saka’s hopes of making the England squad is his versatility, with the 19-year-old recently filling in at left-back for Arsenal.

“I think he had periods where he has played really well for me in a back four as full-back,” said Arteta.

Arsenal FC via Getty Images
Arsenal FC via Getty Images

“He has been exceptional on the right wing, he has been really good as well playing as a wing-back. I think having that flexibility for him has made him a different player.

“He is really intelligent and he can pick things up very quickly. And slowly we will mould him more to the position that we want him to play.”

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