By Kevin Campbell

23rd Mar, 2022 | 10:00am

Bukayo Saka: Pundit hits back at Steven Gerrard after Arsenal footage analysed

Kevin Campbell has hit back at Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard over his comments about Arsenal winger Bukayo Saka.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Gunners and Everton striker suggested the 20-year-old was “targeted” by Villa on Saturday.

Saka scored the only goal of the game at Villa Park as Mikel Arteta’s side strengthened their grip on fourth spot.

Speaking to BT Sport post-match (19 March), the England international revealed he asked referee Andrew Madley for more protection during the game.

As quoted by Sky Sports (21 March), Gerrard told Saka to stop complaining and toughen up.

He revealed that he has screws in his hips from earning a living in English football.

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When asked by Football Insider for his assessment of Gerrard’s comments, Campbell said: “The treatment that Saka gets is what it is.

“There is nothing wrong with a player asking the ref for protection. That is not going to stop the challenges flying in.

“Steven Gerrard said he’s got pins in his hip and all this. Well, Saka doesn’t want that. Saka doesn’t want to have pins in his hip when he finishes his career. That is why he says to the ref, ‘I need protection.’

“We saw Steven Gerrard ask for his players to be protected when he was at Rangers. If it is for you, it is alright but when it is against you…

“Saka has done the right thing as far as I’m concerned. At the end of the day, being kicked from pillar to post is not nice. We don’t want that happening to a young, gifted English player.

“It looked like he got targeted the other day. He kept getting up though. He wasn’t moaning.

In other news, Campbell has revealed he ‘loves’ what he has heard from opposition players after Arsenal footage emerges.