Mohamed Elneny has revealed that he loves life at Arsenal so much that even when he takes a holiday he misses the dressing room camaraderie.
It’s just over a year since the 24-year-old joined the Gunners from Basel in a deal worth just over £7 million. The Egypt international has since made 36 appearances in the centre of the park, adapting his game to partner with Santi Cazorla, Francis Coquelin, Aaron Ramsey and Granit Xhaka.
Speaking to the Daily Mail in Gabon, where’s he’s currently representing his country at the African Cup of Nations, Elneny spoke with pride about his progression in London and the way he’s been made to feel part of the Arsenal family.
“It’s been a great year for me,” he says. “Playing in England, at one of the best five clubs in the world.
“Since I arrived, I’ve enjoyed the whole experience. Not just playing for the club, but the country itself. The friends I’m making, the supporters. The whole atmosphere around the football. It’s been one of the best years of my life.
“In Basel I gained experience. But when I came to England, and Arsenal, I adapted so quickly because I felt straight away it was like a family, a whole big family. You are someone new, but they embrace you. They bring you in.
“Everyone loves each other. When you feel like people love you, and they want you around, that makes you adapt quickly, you enjoy being there.
“That’s why when I leave, even on holiday or with Egypt, I miss it.”
Elneny’s Egypt face Ghana on Wednesday knowing a draw will be good enough to seal safe passage to the quarter-finals in Gabon. Should they lose and Mali beat Uganda, he could return in time for Arsenal’s FA Cup fourth round clash with Southampton on Saturday evening – we could certainly do with him given the suspension to Granit Xhaka.
You can read the rest of the interview in the Mail, here. Yes, linking to it does make us feel dirty.