Saka's Euro 2020 final penalty upset great for his career - Arteta

Mikel Arteta believes Bukayo Saka's missed penalty in England's Euro 2020 final loss to Italy has turned out to be "great" for the Arsenal winger's career.

The 20-year-old missed the decisive spot kick in the penalty shootout against Italy, who were subsequently crowned champions, while the player was the victim of racist abuse on social media.

Despite the upset, Saka has blossomed at Arsenal this term and went on to net his eighth Premier League goal of the season as they beat Watford 3-2 on Sunday.

What has been said?

Arteta has been impressed by the way he has bounced back, saying at a press conference: "I think Bukayo had an experience in the summer that not a lot of players will ever have. I think it was great for his career.

"The football world showed how much they like him and how much they respect him. I don’t think you can get much more than that in football, apart from winning trophies.

"That was a big boost for him, to realise: ‘In difficult moments, these people are really going to give me support’ and the club did the same as his team-mates.

"Then it is about giving him that space. At his age what he is doing is phenomenal. He needs that room. 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."

How has Saka performed this season?

Saka has become a first-team regular for the Gunners this season, having featured 25 times in the Premier League.

He got his first goal and assist of the season when they beat Tottenham 3-1 in September and then went on to score against Newcastle, Leeds, Norwich and Manchester City.

Saka popped up with what turned out to be the winning goal in the recent 2-1 win against Brentford before getting a goal and assist against Watford on Sunday.

Further reading