Willian has admitted that he never wanted to leave Chelsea for Arsenal, and that he only made the decision because of the length of the contract.
The Brazilian has become a martyr in North London this season, with many fans scalding upon seeing the attacking midfielder enter the pitch, and his latest comments are certainly not going to help win us over.
The 32 year-old joined the club last summer on a free transfer from Stamford Bridge, with many reports claiming that the deciding factor was that his previous club would not add an extra year to their contract offer, and the player has now confirmed that, adding that he ‘really wanted to stay’ at Chelsea.
“It was difficult to make that decision, it wasn’t easy,” Willian told Brazilian reporters UOL (via Football365). “Because, as you said, the rivalry between the two clubs is very big. It wasn’t an easy decision to leave Chelsea for Arsenal. It was well thought out, a thoughtful decision, talking to my wife and even the agent many times.
“And one of the things that made me decide to go to Arsenal was really the various conversations I had with Mikel Arteta, with Edu too. They convinced me to go there that it’d be a really cool project, that it’d be really good for me to be able to go there.
“That I’d be a very important player in the squad. That they wanted to change the philosophy of the club, to make it possible for Arsenal to fight again in the Premier League, to play in the Champions League again.
“So there were several conversations I had, several conversations that ended up pleasing me, so that’s why I ended up making this decision. But it really wasn’t easy to make that decision, it had to be well thought out.
“Look, I think some fans asked this question. But the majority understood because I didn’t leave the club with a fight, I left the doors open. Everyone knew the conditions, I really wanted to stay.
“We ended up not finding an agreement, I ended up asking for three years, Chelsea wanted to give two, and everyone knows this story. That’s why I ended up leaving.”
Mikel Arteta continues to use his summer signing, although more sparingly following the impressive performances of his rivals for similar roles, and I can’t believe that any Gunner will be looking to give him a break after admitting that he never wanted to make the move in the first place.
While we had read the reports, his admittance makes it worse somehow, and this could well be the reason why is isn’t performing for us.
The fans are already on his back after a number of seemingly below-par performances, and the fact that he appears to still hold favour with Mikel Arteta is even more frustrating.
I can’t help but think that the former Chelsea star has no interest in putting his issues with the fans to bed with his comments, although that could well be a good thing if this means he finds himself a new home this summer instead of cashing his cheque with us for the remaining two years of his contract.
Is Willian unhappy after his move? Or does he simply not care about Arsenal FC?