Saliba, 21, was signed by the Gunners from St Etienne back in 2019 but has yet to play a game for the club as he has spent most of that time on loan in France.
Last summer, the centre-back joined Marseille for the current season and has been a mainstay in the Ligue 1 side’s defence, making 33 appearances this season, earning the Frenchman a place in Arteta’s squad next season.
However, Silvestre, who played at the Emirates between 2008 and 2010, believes Saliba still needs improvement and will not develop while on the Arsenal bench.
Speaking to Genting Casino, he said: “If you look at Gabriel and Ben White I think that should be the partnership for next season. If Saliba comes in, he’ll be a backup.
“He’s still young and I’d be tempted to loan him out for another year to make him even more consistent. He’s improved on this loan but there have been a couple of games where he hasn’t been at his best.
“To develop and become a big part of Arsenal going forward, if you bench him after a full season for Marseille it would be a step backwards in his development. You have a big decision to make about his future.”
It’s likely Saliba would be fourth in the pecking order behind Ben White, Gabriel and Rob Holding if he stayed at Arsenal next season.
Last year, Saliba revealed his frustration at not being able to break into the first-team squad at Arsenal and was recently linked with Atletico Madrid.
Earlier this month, Arteta conceded that Saliba had performed well in France, with the youngster playing a significant role in Marseille’s run to the Europa Conference League semi-finals this season.
He said: “Well, first of all we made the decision together to loan him out. And now he’s getting those chances in a really competitive league and he’s doing really well.
MORE : ‘He’s got guts’ – Brendan Rodgers praises Roma striker Tammy Abraham amid Arsenal interest
MORE : Arsenal ready to include Pablo Mari in bid to sign Udinese right-back Nahuel Molin
For more stories like this, visit our sports page.
Follow Metro Sport for the latest news
Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
https://metro.co.uk/2022/04/27/mikael-silvestre-explains-why-arsenal-should-not-keep-william-saliba-16547044/ Mikael Silvestre explains why Arsenal shouldn't keep William Saliba