After a hectic week that culminated with a victory over Huddersfield, Unai Emery gave Arsenal’s players a couple of days off to rest before games with Qarabag and Southampton.
Nacho Monreal has taken the opportunity to reorganise his collection of early 20th century European stamps, Sokratis spent Sunday finishing the latest John Grisham in his local Costa, Lucas Torreira travelled to Madrid for the final of the Copa Libertadores and Matteo Guendouzi went to Paris to appear on a TV show.
The 19-year-old may have left France for England in the summer but his progress is being followed closely back home. The football fraternité have enjoyed what they’ve seen of the curly-haired, slightly lairy midfielder and having impressed at under-21 level he’s being tipped for a call-up to Didier Deschamps Les Bleus.
It turns out there was a fair bit of competition to sign him from Lorient, not least from cash-rich PSG.
Speaking on Canal Football Club [translated by Get French Football News], Guendouzi revealed: “It is true that PSG were very interested, like other teams, there were a lot of discussions, but for me the best decision I could make was to join Arsenal.
“Once they positioned themselves, I didn’t hesitate, I orientated myself in that direction.
“I think when I was young I watched a lot of Arsenal, but the fact that there are a lot of French guys there played a big role.”
— Matteo Guendouzi (@MatteoGuendouzi) December 9, 2018
Guendouzi also spoke of his respect for Unai Emery and the role the Spaniard played in luring him across the Channel.
“He was definitely a reason why I went,” he said. “It was him who really wanted me to come to Arsenal.
“He is a very good manager, we have done very good results since the beginning of the season with him. He doesn’t come across as feeling under particular pressure, he is just doing what he loves to do.
“He has transmitted that to us on the pitch and that is why we are getting the results we are getting.”
We also noticed that Guendouzi, appearing next to the newly crowned Ballon d’Or winner Ada Hegerberg, seemed to take jacket inspiration from @Gunnerblog’s efforts at the FSF awards earlier last week. Good on him.