Mikel Arteta says Arsenal need to give their new signings time and space if they are to get the best from them this season.
The Gunners moved quickly when the transfer window opened in June, snapping up Kai Havertz from Chelsea, Jurrien Timber from Ajax and Declan Rice from West Ham in the space of 16 days.
All three players were present on the recent tour of the USA and the early signs are that they are settling well within the group.
“The feedback we’ve had from the new players is that they feel like they’ve been here for years already,” reveals Arteta in his programme notes ahead of Wednesday’s Emirates Cup clash with Monaco.
“That tells you a lot about the culture here, and how welcoming and easy everybody around the place is, to make you feel part of it and part of the Arsenal family straight away.”
He added: “Obviously for some of them it has been a big change – in the model they’re used to, in the demands and expectations, and we have to acknowledge that and treat them in the right way.
“So let’s make sure we give those players some time as well, and to make sure that they have the needed space in which to express themselves, and then get to the level that we want from them.
“That is always important in helping new players integrate.”
Having had an extended holiday following his Conference League exploits with West Ham and international duties, Rice appears to be a little behind his teammates on the fitness front. He also picked up a knock in training ahead of last week’s win over Barcelona and didn’t feature in Los Angeles.
The 24-year-old midfielder, our club-record signing following his £100 million move, was pictured in training earlier this week and should be in line for his home debut tonight.