Arsenal’s winter signing Pablo Mari has heaped praise on David Luiz after playing alongside the Brazilian for the Gunners. Luiz made the surprise move to the Emirates from Chelsea before the summer transfer deadline and he has since been a regular at the heart of the defence for the north London club.

The 32-year-old has experienced a few average performances which have been criticised from the Gunners faithful but overall, he has had a good season when compared to the other centre-backs in the squad. Of late, Mari was handed his debut against Portsmouth in the FA Cup fifth round and his performance was sufficient enough for him to make his league debut against West Ham United.

In both of those games, the Spaniard was partnered by Luiz in the central defence and he has no doubts over the qualities of the Brazil international, he told: “We know that David is an unbelievable player.He’s had a good career is a good footballer, and also playing with him is so easy. These two games with him in the starting XI were nice because I only focused on my job and I didn’t need to focus on other jobs. This is easy when you want to have a big game. We know he’s an experienced player and sometimes when you need to do different things in the last minutes, like when you need to make calls or something like this, he can do it. For us, it’s easy to play with him.”

The Gunners have made a good comeback under manager Mikel Arteta during the backend of the campaign and they have won three league games on the spin. As a result, they are within five points off a potential Champions League spot with a game in hand. Following their recent Europa League exit, the Gunners are entirely dependent on a top-five league spot to qualify for next season’s Champions League.