New Arsenal signing Sokratis Papastathopoulos says moving to the Emirates is ‘a beautiful moment’ and revealed that former Borussia Dortmund teammates Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang called him many times in the build-up to his move.
The Greece international has become a Gunner in a deal worth around £16 million and is looking forward to joining forces with players he knows well from the Westfalenstadion.
“I feel very good,” he told the club’s website at London Colney.
“It’s my first day here, everything is special. It’s a beautiful moment and I’m very happy that I will be here for the next years.
“Arsenal is one of the three biggest teams in the Premier League and one very big club. It has a lot of fans and a very big history.
“Like I said before, I’m very happy that for the next years I will be here to help the team.
“I spoke [to Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang] a lot [of] times. They said to me the best things about this club, that it is one big family and of course they also called me not every day but a lot of times telling me to come here.
It’s a little bit [strange to play with them again] but it’s also very beautiful that I’ve come to one team but I also have two players who I was together with for a lot of years. I know them both very well and I’m very happy.”
Sokratis also touched on his no-nonsense attitude towards defending, something Arsenal fans will no doubt be looking forward to seeing in the coming months.
“I’m a normal defender who likes to defend,” he explained.
“I like that my team doesn’t [concede] goals and I like the zero in the defence of course. I will do everything to help achieve these goals.
“I think that a defender first has to defend, to protect the goal, and then after if he can help in front a little bit for the game, then it’s good. But first of all, he has to defend.”
Welcome Sokratis, may you win as many titles with us as there are letters in your ridiculously difficult-to-spell surname.