By Amir Mir
Arsenal youngster Rob Holding has revealed he wants to model his game around Arsenal centre-back greats Tony Adams, Sol Campbell and Martin Keown.
Holding made a £2 million summer move from Bolton on a long-term contract as his early career enters a more tougher stage with the Premier League club.
The 20-year-old made 30 appearances in an impressive season for the relegated club, as Arsene Wenger snapped up his services, which could see him thrown into the deep end and feature in the club’s opening Premier League fixture against Liverpool.
However, the youngster revealed who he emulates his game on as he looks to make an impression on his new supporters.
“Growing up I liked to think I modelled my game on Rio Ferdinand, especially the way he played when he was in a partnership with Nemanja Vidic at Manchester United.” Holding told the club’s official website.
A Bolton academy graduate, Holding revealed which Arsenal players he admired as he pin-pointed a certain quality he wishes to express to the Gunners support.
“I also watched Arsenal growing up and they had the likes of Tony Adams, Sol Campbell and Martin Keown who are all top-drawer centre halves that I admired and wanted to be like,” said Holding.
“I just liked how much of a leader they were on the pitch, Tony Adams especially. Sol Campbell was just a brick wall and you couldn’t get around him.”
Adams made 669 appearances for Arsenal during a 19-year period, 14 of those were as captain with 10 major trophies to his name.
Dubbed as “Mr Arsenal”, the hard hitting centre-back is regarded as one of the greatest defenders of the last three decades.
Holding made a further impression on Wenger by scoring in the north London club’s 3-1 pre-season friendly win over Chivas de Guadalajara in the United States.
The centre-back will now prepare for a gruelling Premier League season, which will see him vying for a first-team spot in all competitions.
Experienced duo Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny are either injured or resting, which means Holding will compete with Gabriel and Callum Chambers for a starting place at the heart of the Arsenal defence.
In other Arsenal team news, another Gunners midfielder is set to miss the opening Premier League game against Liverpool.