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Dixon: Bould has improved Arsenal defending

Arsenal hero Lee Dixon believes former teammate Steve Bould has had a big influence on their defensive improvements this season.

Bould took over as assistant manager from Pat Rice in May 2012 and despite persistent initial rumours over his frustration at not having a more hands-on approach, Dixon believes his former team-mate's impact is being felt.

"Over the last few years, defensively their attitude has not been good enough as a team," Dixon told the London Evening Standard. "They have been borderline poor without the ball - winning it back in the middle of the pitch as opposed to on the edge of your own box makes a massive difference. Sometimes they overcomplicated things and tried to play their way out of trouble.

"Steve has had a big influence. I know Arsene likes to be in control of training - in my six years with him, he did it all - but he realised that the team defensively weren't good enough. Pat decided to retire and Steve took his opportunity.

"I know for a fact that Arsene wouldn't let him take training for a week - that's not his style - but there has definitely been an influence there. Even if he came in and didn't say one word, the fact that he is a multi-Premier League winner and a player who has been there and done it, I know that he would only have to look at me and I would know I needed to improve."

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Tribal Football Staff

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