Aaron Ramsey is looking forward to a full season of first team football at the Emirates after admitting that his horrific leg break effectively saw his career put on hold for 18 months.
The Wales international captain looks set for an important year under Arsene Wenger’s stewardship with many tipping the 20-year-old to build on his partnership with Jack Wilshere in light of the potentially imminent exits of both Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas.
Citing the opportunity to play a full part in the Gunners pre-season training sessions and matches, Ramsey told press ahead of Wales’ match with Australia of his eagerness to impress:
“I’m really looking forward to the next 12 months,” said Ramsey. “I’ve had a full pre-season, which is a massive advantage, and I just want to kick on from last season.
“Before my injury, I was starting to play regularly and then everything came to a stop – it was as if someone had pressed the pause button on my career.
“Now I feel I am ready to carry on and, hopefully, improve.
“The two loan spells I had last season [at Nottingham Forest and former club Cardiff] really helped me regain my confidence and I felt I put in some good performances at the end of last season with Arsenal and, hopefully, I can get some more.
“I am just going to try to impress in training and in the game time I am given – I just want to play as many games as possible.”
Not blind to the press’ repeated bashing of Arsene Wenger or deaf to the boos which accompanied Arsenal’s Emirates Cup draw with the New York Red Bulls, the former Cardiff youngster made clear that with some defensive tweaking there remains enough quality to mount an assault for honours both at home and in Europe.
“Arsenal’s had a bit of stick, but none of the players take any notice of that. We know what we have to do on the pitch.
“There is no doubting our ability going forward, but maybe we need to stop conceding sloppy goals.
“We are always going to be a threat in getting goals, we just need to tighten up a bit. If we can do that, we will be there and thereabouts at the end of the season.
“We just want to win everything and give it our best shot and that’s why the Champions League qualifying game next week is so important.”