Mohamed Elneny has thanked Mikel Arteta for resurrecting his Arsenal career after the Egypt midfielder was singled out for praise by his manager following Saturday’s 3-0 win over Fulham.
The Egypt international joined the Gunners in January 2016 when Arteta was still a first team squad member at the Emirates Stadium, but his time in north London has largely been a frustrating one.
Indeed, Elneny spent last season on loan at Besiktas having been deemed surplus to requirements of Unai Emery, but has been handed an unlikely lifeline at the start of the new campaign.
The 28-year-old impressed in the Community Shield win over Liverpool a fortnight ago and with Arteta’s options in midfield limited, he kept his place against the Cottagers and his performance was described as phenomenal by his manager afterwards.
Reacting to the praise, Elneny said: ‘I feel really happy and I have to thank Mikel Arteta for giving me a chance to play.
‘I know it’s not easy to be on loan and come back to Arsenal and I’m really happy because I made everyone feel like I was not away from the team. This makes me really happy and I have to thank Mikel Arteta because he helped me a lot to feel like this.
‘He speaks to me always, saying things like ‘we need you on the team’ and he is always giving me good feedback and always pushing me to get the best from me. I’m really happy to be here.
‘I’ll give 100% every day in the training and if they give me a chance to play, I will always give 100%. Because it’s the best for me, to play always in regular games and to give 100% to the team, to help the team to win and make sure that we’re going to build a team to be strong in the Premier League.’
Arteta represents the third manager Elneny has played under at Arsenal since signing from Basel and he has been staggered by the change in ethos and attitude his new boss has implemented.
He added: ‘We feel like we are more aggressive, like everyone just wants to give 100%. This was what we missed in Arsenal, because at Arsenal we always loved to play football but we didn’t care [enough] about giving 100%. But now we can see that everyone does, even the kit man!
‘Everyone has to give 100% because this is a great club and everyone has to work really hard to push this club to win the Premier League, to win everything, because we have quality players, we have the facilities, we have the family. Everyone is great in this club.’