Oleksandr Zinchenko revealed that he requested to be introduced to club legend Tony Adams, before naming four of his favourites to watch from yesteryear.
The Ukrainian has been a big hit since joining the Gunners from Manchester City in the summer, quickly making fans in north London, despite challenging fellow fans’ favourite Kieran Tierney for his left-back role in the side.
He has made such an impact that many would name him in their chosen starting XI ahead of the ever-consistent Scot, who many have been touting as a future club captain of Arsenal for some time.
Zinchenko spoke to Arsenal Media this week to admit that he was always an Arsenal fan growing up, a fact that will only further his connection with the fanbase, and went onto admit that he requested an introduction with former club captain Adams.
‘I asked club photographer Stuart MacFarlane if he would introduce me to Tony and also take a picture. He is absolutely a legend,’ Zinchenko told Arsenal Media.
‘I’ve seen clips of him playing on the internet, I know about his reputation, but also I remember the words of my ex-national team coach, Andrey Shevchenko. He used to always say to me that Tony Adams was the toughest defender he ever faced in his career.
‘I told Tony that when we met. He was laughing, he’s a great guy, Tony is a joker – but what a player he was. Thank God I didn’t have to play against him in my career!’
He went onto claim that it was Thierry Henry, Cesc Fabregas and Robin Van Persie that he grew up watching most however, as well as Dennis Bergkamp in his earlier years.
‘I always watched Arsenal. People know I was an Arsenal supporter when I was a kid,’ he added. ‘That was because I loved watching players like Thierry Henry, Cesc Fabregas and Dennis Bergkamp too.
‘I watched him but mainly I was watching a bit later, when Robin van Persie was up front with Henry. Cesc was there too and it was a fantastic team.’
It is no surprise that such a technical player would have grown up watching Thierry and Cesc, especially given how intelligent a player that the Ukrainian is on the ball. There is still more to come from Oleks if he can manage to remain fit, which has started to become an issue so far this term.
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