Mohamed Elneny spoke to the media yesterday about his mindset when former Arsenal boss Unai Emery pushed him out of the club.
The Egyptian has never really been a first-choice at Arsenal, but he has always been a good squad player to have. He is good enough to do a job when called upon and is never the one to cause trouble when he isn’t playing.
That is why Elneny is loved by everyone at the club, but Emery didn’t really fancy him at the start of last season. He publicly claimed that he wanted the Egyptian to leave the club (Guardian), and he did just that.
The midfielder joined Turkish side Besiktas on a season-long loan deal. He had a very good season there, but nobody expected him to return to Arsenal and be a part of the manager’s plans for this season.
Mikel Arteta, however, chose to keep him at the club and Elneny has now revealed that returning to Arsenal was all he was thinking about after Emery sent him out on loan to Besiktas in 2019.
He said, as per Football London: “I expected to come back because I want to always be with the biggest team.
“I’m really happy to be in Arsenal. When I was on loan I was thinking all the time that I need to get back to Arsenal, be in the squad and play. That’s why I worked really hard at Besiktas and built myself up to come back stronger.”
Arsenal Insider’s view:
Elneny really is a joy to have in the team. He isn’t the player who will carry us every game, but he has all the qualities to come in and do a brilliant job whenever he is called upon by Arteta.
His performance against Manchester United at Old Trafford was absolutely incredible. He has been solid in the Europa League as well, and his screamer late in the game last week could well be the reason why we go through to the quarter-finals.
Elneny will enter the final year of his contract this summer and he has already claimed that he is open to a new deal. Edu and Arteta now have a decision to make, but it shouldn’t be a hard one considering how well he has played this season.