May 17, 2016
Mohamed Elneny has admitted that changing his mentality when arriving at Europe has helped him to adapt quicker than expected.
Since joining the Gunners in the winter, Elneny has managed to quickly secure his place among the team’s starting 11, starting 9 games for the Gunners in the English Premier League and coming on as a substitute in two matches.
He explained that his previous spell in Europe at FC Basel was an important step before moving to Arsenal.
“It would have been very hard to move from Egypt to England straight away, especially to a big club like Arsenal. My time in Switzerland helped me a lot though, ” the Egyptian midfielder told Arsenal official website.
Elneny joined Basel from Egypt’s Arab Contractors in January 2013, initially on loan, before completing a permanent move to the Swiss club in the summer transfer window of the same year.
“I wanted to take the step and play outside Egypt, given how I see football being played abroad. I believed that I could play abroad, so when it happened I was very happy because my dream started to become true. I was also pleased that I could take another step forward in my career.
“You have to change your mentality [when you move countries] to think like successful people. This is the mentality I have always wanted to achieve in my life,” Elneny explained.
In his three years with Basel, Elneny has managed to help his team win the league three consecutive times.
“There weren’t any big challenges because Basel is the biggest club in Switzerland. Everyone was very professional and they had solutions so there wasn’t any problems nor challenges that could face any player. Whenever I needed anything they helped me,” he added.
The 23-year-old, who joined Arsenal in January 2016, has already won Arsenal Player of the Month award for two consecutive times. He explained that playing at Arsenal would help him learn and gain experience.
“When I came to Arsenal, there were different ideas. If you went somewhere thinking you know everything, then you’ll never learn. I gain experience and I always learn from people here because they are successful. Arsenal are one of the biggest five clubs in the world so they’re definitely successful people. You have to listen to everyone here to gain their experience,” he concluded.