Catalin Cirjan is one of Arsenal’s brightest young talents, but not many people knew he was a Gooner since he was a little kid.

The Romanian sat down for an interview with London World this week, where he spoke about Arsenal, Mikel Arteta and how he used to call himself Thierry Henry when he was young.

Now 20, Cirjan is pushing for a place in Arsenal’s senior setup.

Catalin Cirjan Arsenal
Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Why Pele Is Overrated.

Video of Catalin Cirjan as a 3-year-old shows he’s Arsenal through and through

Cirjan joined Arsenal from Romanian side Viitorul Domnesti back in the summer of 2019.

Everyone at Hale End immediately saw what a remarkable talent he is, and he was viewed by many as the next big thing to break into the Gunners’ senior setup.

However, Cirjan suffered multiple knee injuries that kept him out of action for 15 long and painful months. That hurt his dream of playing for Arsenal’s first team, but it’s not over just yet.

“My long-term ambition with Arsenal is firstly to make my debut and be the first Romanian that plays for Arsenal the club, then winning trophies and being an important player in the team,” he said.

“It’s my dream as a child. I liked to tell everyone that I am Thierry Henry and the fact that life has brought me to the position of being part of this wonderful club seems to me something amazing.”

Chris Wheatley shared a video on Twitter of Cirjan from when he was just three years old. He’s seen wearing a Thierry Henry shirt back in his home town in Romania.

He has amazed Mikel Arteta

When Cirjan suffered his terrible injury, instead of letting him go, Arsenal decided to give him a new contract. That shows the faith Mikel Arteta has in him.

The youngster spoke about the Gunners boss and how he amazed him in a training session once.

“He [Arteta] knows what I’ve been through,” Cirjan said. He was also in a similar situation [with a long-term injury]. He told me that I amazed him and that he admired me for the strength with which I came back after the operations.

“I am very grateful to Mikel for the way he talked about me, even more as these words come from the team manager of the moment, in the best championship of the world. I have great pride to be coached by Mikel and I try to learn as much as possible from him, especially since my style of play is very similar to the one he had as a player.”

Catalin Cirjan Arsenal
Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images

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