Mertesacker: Ich liebe the Donkey who won the Derby

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While the club may not recognise the value of good PR, new recruit Per Mertesacker certainly appears savvy enough to press the right buttons of Gooners across the world.

Speaking to the club’s website in his first interview since signing on at the Emirates the German international revealed a childhood admiration for Highbury hero Tony Adams while also confirming his ownership of an Arsenal kit dating back sixteen years.

“We [he and his brother] went to the shop [when on holiday in England] and picked up some shirts and I picked up the Arsenal one. Since then when I’m looking to England, I’m looking to Arsenal.

Coy on any suggestion that he was an avid fan, Mertesacker went on to talk about former club captain Adams, the fabled ‘Donkey’ who won the 1993 FA Cup semi-final derby against Tottenham Hotspur.

“We didn’t get many pictures of him on the television but Adams was a legend here. He is a special one for me.

“When I was looking at English football I always looked to Arsenal and he was one of the great defenders when I was ten or 12 years old. I knew he was the centre-half for Arsenal.

“I like the players [like Adams] very much – I have enjoyed seeing them over the years. I hope I can improve my performances here and get better and better – I want to be useful for the team.”

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