Arsenal star ripped into by national media after Euro 2024 nightmare

Jakub Kiwior’s Poland are the first team to crash out of Euro 2024 (Image: Getty)

Arsenal defender Jakub Kiwior is already guaranteed to be coming home after a nightmare Euro 2024 group stage for Poland. Their 3-1 defeat to Austria on Friday, coupled with France’s draw against Holland later in the day, consigned them to the bottom of Group D regardless of what happens on their final matchday.

Kiwior started on the left side of a back-three against Austria, as he did against Holland five days prior. Both games ended in a loss, and Polish media weren’t complimentary about the Arsenal defender after his latest outing.

National outlet Meczyki gave him a dreadful 4/10 rating, describing his start to the match as ‘bad’, and his passing as ‘wildly inaccurate’. They did, however, allow him some slack by acknowledging he didn’t make any costly mistakes.

But the grilling will undoubtedly be tough to take for Kiwior ahead of Poland’s final group game. And it’s not about to get any easier as they prepare to take on European heavyweights France on Tuesday.

One of the only positives for Kiwior about Poland’s Euros ordeal is that an early exit will allow him to rest and recover ahead of the new season. The 24-year-old has found minutes hard to come by in his favoured centre-back position under Mikel Arteta.

The two players ahead of him in Arsenal’s pecking order – William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes – are set for a jam-packed summer of taxing tournament football.

Jakub Kiwior slotted in at left-back for Arsenal last season (Image: Getty)

Saliba is expected to enjoy a deep run with France at Euro 2024, while Gabriel is at the Copa America with Brazil. Whether the added freshness will help Kiwior fight his way into the team remains to be seen.

The Polish defender, who signed in a £20million deal from Spezia in 2023, has long been linked with a move back to Serie A. However, he earned a run of games at left-back last season and Arteta gave him credit for adapting to the unfamiliar role.

The Arsenal boss said: “We have made it difficult for him for two reasons: One, because he hasn’t played that many minutes, and the second one because we asked him to play in a position that he’s never played in before. So it’s like putting William Saliba as a full-back and saying, ‘There we go, tomorrow go and perform and do what we have to do!’

“I think he’s playing better and better, you can tell that he’s earning the confidence and physically he’s better, he understands the role much better and he’s been really good.”