Wenger Surprised by Ramsey’s Dramatic Improvement
Arsene Wenger sang Aaron Ramsey’s praises after the Welsh midfielder scored yet another goal in Arsenal’s Wednesday-night UEFA Champions League win over Olympique Marseille in France.
Ramsey, 22, scored the Gunners’ second of the night in the 84th minute after Theo Walcott had given them the lead earlier in the second half. It was his sixth goal of the season – already his career best production – and like everyone else, Wenger says he is also surprised to see such a dramatic change in Ramsey’s technical ability and numbers.
After last night’s win, the French trainer said: “Honestly I didn’t expect him [Ramsey] to score so many goals, but he has especially improved with his passing and his technical quality. That is the most important because he was always in good positions in the box. Scoring is a bit cyclic. You have some periods where it goes in and periods where it doesn’t but for me the most important is the quality of his game.
“I decided to be patient with him because when you have been injured for such a long time it takes a while to get back to your best. I don’t know if anyone is playing better. I don’t look at it like that. Aaron is playing well, that is the most important.”
Marseille fans were not happy with their team’s performance, and they were pretty expressive with their frustration. But Wenger pointed out at the fact that it took his side 65 minutes to open the scoring to suggest that L’OM were no pushovers.
“It is only the people of Marseille who seem unconvinced about the quality of their team. I was convinced before the match. They know they have nothing to lose and the French are always dangerous when they are in that position. They are not out of it yet,” he added.
Flamini’s ‘Attitude’ Force Wenger to Re-sign Him
Arsene Wenger has confessed that re-signing his former protege Mathieu Flamini for Arsenal wasn’t his original plan, but the midfielder’s ‘attitude and desire’ forced him to do so.
The Gunners boss handed his fellow Frenchman a three-year deal last month after initially allowing him to just train with his senior squad. The way he had left Arsenal for AC Milan’s fatter pay checks in 2008 had left a bad taste in Wenger’s mouth, but Flamini’s show of passion in training and general conduct convinced Wenger to kiss and make up.
In an interview with Arsenal.com, Wenger said: “First of all I believe that he realised what he had here. When you’re very young, it is difficult to understand what he had at Arsenal. I must say I was reluctant to sign him again, but he was so honest in his statement that he wants to play the kind of football we play, that he wants to help us to win. He convinced me through his attitude and his desire in training that he will be the right signing for us.
“It was his attitude. He could have gone somewhere else. He had offers but he wanted to put it right with this club and I think he felt somewhere that he had something to bring to the piece here. He was determined to do that.”
From a sporting point of view, Wenger says Flamini provides his side with some balance, and ‘dedicated’ players like him are required in every successful team.
“Flamini is absolutely crucial to the balance of the team. He had not played since May and when you see how well he came in, it shows you how focused and how dedicated he was in his preparation,” he added. “He’s got what is needed in every team. I wouldn’t say we lacked that as much as people say, but he is of course important for the balance of the team that we have players with his qualities.”
Ajayi Claims He Is An Arsenal Player Now
Free agent defender Semi Ajayi has claimed that he has signed for Arsenal FC on a free transfer. (Metro)
Ajayi, 19, who is a highly-rated centre-half, has been without a club since his contract with Charlton Athletic expired at the end of last season. He is a lifelong Arsenal fan and had been on trial at the North London club for the past few weeks. During this time, he impressed the Gunners enough to be offered a deal.
The news was broken by the player himself through his Twitter account. He wrote: “Thank you everyone for the messages wishing me well on my move to Arsenal I’ve been overwhelmed by the amount and I’m truly grateful.
“It was sad to end my ten year spell with charlton this summer but I can’t speak highly enough of all of the wonderful people I met during my ten years there & I wish all those at @CAFCofficial the best for the future as I will always have a soft spot for the club & it’s fans.
“Delighted to announce that I have officially signed for @Arsenal FC. Can’t wait to see what the next two seasons here have in store for me.
“Thank you everyone for the messages wishing me well on my move to Arsenal I’ve been overwhelmed by the amount and I’m truly grateful.”
The news hasn’t officially been confirmed by Arsenal yet.
Giroud Reveals Why He Preferred Suarez Over Higuain
Olivier Giroud says that similarities in playing styles mean that he wasn’t too crazy when Gonzalo Higuain or other centre-forwards were linked with a move to Arsenal FC in the summer transfer window. But the same wasn’t the case when Liverpool superstar Luis Suarez came into the picture.
While the Frenchman claims he isn’t afraid of a little competition, he believes Higuain would have been too similar to him. On the other hand, Suarez offers positional diversity and would’ve complemented his own playing style, which is why he was more receptive to the Uruguayan’s signing.
French paper L’Equipe have quoted Giroud as saying: “When the name of Suarez was circulating, I honestly thought it was a good thing for the team. We would’ve complemented each other. Suarez can also play out wide. It would have been difficult for me with another player.”
About Higuain, he added: “We would have been in direct competition because he is a pure central striker. Of course, at the time, it would have bothered me a bit but I was not afraid of competition.”