Arsenal striker Danny Welbeck has spoken about manager Arsene Wenger, revealing that the veteran Frenchman is a ‘legend’ who gives his players the opportunity to express themselves on the pitch (via Arsenal.com). The England international, who was purchased last season from Manchester United, also spoke about playing under two of the greatest managers in the game.
Welbeck has missed the entire season so far thanks to an injury that has kept him out since last season. The player underwent surgery in September and has been slated for a January comeback, which seems to be progressing on schedule (via Goal). In his absence, Arsenal have done remarkably well in the striker department, with Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud handling the pressure very well. Welbeck now faces a tough challenge if he wants to break into the first team and also prove his worth for the England national side ahead of the Euro 2016 tournament.
Speaking to Arsenal Player, Welbeck had this to say, “Both [managers] have that presence and both are legends in the modern game. They have won plenty of trophies between them and I have worked under Sir Alex and Arsène Wenger and it is a great honour to say that, but I want to be the best that I can be.
“I definitely feel free [here at Arsenal]. Before we go out against a team we have analysed before hand, [Arsène Wenger] gives the team a few pointers of what he wants us to be doing on the pitch and the lads stick to that. But he also gives you the freedom to express yourself and play the way you want to play.
“It is difficult [to cope with a long-term injury]. It is my first injury that has kept me out for so long. I had my operation and once that is sorted you can be out for a few more months.
“For the first month, in a leg brace, not being able to do anything, on a machine six hours a day, it was very difficult. But you have to try and see the positives. Luckily I had my family around me, my friends came down to London and I had my brothers.
“It was good to have people around me and have that support. You wake up in the morning and know you have double sessions in the gym it is hard but you have to see the positive side and I have learnt a lot more being injured on how to look after your body and prevent injuries. I have to see the positive side and hopefully when I come back, I will be flying.”
Welbeck made a few notable contributions last season, including a hat trick against Galatasaray in the Champions League and a goal against former club Manchester United in the FA Cup. The player has the physical attributes and the mentality required to be a success at Arsenal, and can also link up well with the other England internationals at the club. However, he needs to turn in several quality performances to stand a chance against the likes of Giroud and Walcott, both of whom have been in great form this season.
The manager certainly has faith in the young striker, and the fans have taken a liking to Welbeck as well. All that remains to be seen is whether he can establish himself as a regular at the club. The player himself will certainly fancy his chances of following the likes of Francis Coquelin and Hector Bellerin into first team notoriety. Hopefully, he succeeds and becomes part of the solid British core of Arsenal, which is a very potent combination; when they are all fit, at least.