Mertesacker: Do it for fans

Cult hero Per Mertesacker is determined to give the Arsenal fans a trophy to celebrate this weekend, by beating Hull City in the FA Cup final.

Last Updated: 17/05/14 at 09:55 Post Comment

Per Mertesacker: Right time to repay Arsenal fans

Per Mertesacker: Right time to repay Arsenal fans

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Few could have foreseen the giant centre-back becoming such a popular figure when he arrived during a flurry of late transfer activity in August 2011.

While the likes of Park Chu-young and Andre Santos flopped, Mertesacker recovered from a difficult first season in north London to establish himself at the heart of the Gunners defence.

Paying tribute to supporters, ahead of Arsenal's attempt to end a nine-year drought without a trophy at Wembley, Mertesacker said: "I had a hard first season but they encouraged me so I have to give them credit.

"Especially in my first season they always covered me and always backed me up and gave me that bit of confidence you need as a player.

"(Winning the cup) would mean a lot, that would be a big step for our team.

"We went through a lot of difficulties. We were top of the league, then we dropped points and then came back to fourth position. We want to keep our run now.

"We won five consecutive games, we want to continue with that (on) Saturday. That is really important. It looks like we are back on track. We have to keep our focus."

Mertesacker will be cheered on at Wembley by friends and family, including brother Timo who bears a striking resemblance to the defender and has a penchant for going on Arsenal away trips.

"He does it just to improve his English and get on with away fans," he said. "It's a good experience to get.

"He just loves it and, when he has time, he comes over just for away games."

Mertesacker's friends and family will be hoping to see the defender collect his first silverware in five years this weekend.

He missed Werder Bremen's German Cup success in 2009 through injury but still took home a medal thanks to the decisive goal from Mesut Ozil.

The Germany internationals are now plying their trade together again in north London and the playmaker is beginning to impress once more after a mid-season slump.

"We are happy that we have him back in our squad and available because you could see from the start that he is one of the best players in Europe," Mertesacker said.

"His contribution and his assists are vital for any club, so we are happy to have him back.

"I knew before he would suffer at some moment in his first Premier League season, so we are happy that he is fit again and that he has got a few games under his belt to go now to Wembley and show everything."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

t's a bloody good goal, though. Sh!t, the kid's gonna be the worlds best before we know it, isn't he? He's got the touch of genius in him. Like Neymar, but with muscles and stuff. He's doing a Ronaldo as we watch. He's bulked up to be able to ride the tackles, but he's improved technically as well. His touch is sublime. Bugger.

HarryBoulton
WATCH: Hazard's stunning goal

A

hhh, Jose arguing with another managers wife, clearest sign yet that we are going mental during the close season. I am rocking back and forth on my haunches.

hump3.
Jose hits back at Rafa's wife

I

t's only a matter of time before one of them throws in a yo mamma

lee
Jose hits back at Rafa's wife

Footer 365

Chelsea fail with £25m bid for Everton's John Stones

Everton have rejected an improved bid of £25m from Chelsea for centre-half John Stones, according to Sky sources.

Jose: 'Cabaye move makes PL harder'

Jose Mourinho claims the transfer of players like Yohan Cabaye to mid-table clubs makes the PL "very, very hard" to win.

Real reopen talks over £28m De Gea deal

Real Madrid have reportedly reopened negotiations with Manchester United over David de Gea and may complete a deal in the coming days.

Mail Box

Mails: This Is My Perfect Moment

Lots of Mailboxers channel their inner Martine McCutcheon to bring you their perfect footballing moments. Plus thoughts on Blatter, names, and Chelsea worries...

Mails: Let's Talk About Jose's Failures...

We don't talk about them because Chelsea won the title...but imagine if LVG or Brendan Rodgers had signed Juan Cuadrado. Plus, a trawl through the squads...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company