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Leno frustrated by Arsenal bench role

21 septembrie 2018 15:43

Bernd Leno has told Unai Emery he joined Arsenal expecting to play every week and he is frustrated playing backup to Petr Cech.

Leno joined the Gunners in a reported £22million deal from Bayer Leverkusen in July and was tipped to become first-choice between the posts, with Cech showing signs of decline over the last couple of years.

Yet, even with Cech enduring an indifferent start to the season under Emery, the 36-year-old has managed to retain his place.

Leno made his Arsenal debut in Thursday's 4-2 Europa League win over Vorskla, and he has since conceded he expected to be playing more when he first joined.

Speaking to the London Evening Standard, Leno said: "I came to the club to play every game, but I think to move to a bigger club, another country, it needs maybe a little bit of time.

"It is a bit frustrating, but I keep calm and work very hard to improve. The coach always makes the starting XI because of the performance.

"I think it could change, not every week, but he will change a lot. He didn't say the league is Petr's competition and the Europa League is mine. I will work every day hard to play more games.

"I came for the Premier League. I think it is the best. The Bundesliga is good, but the Premier League is better, so I will look forward to playing any time in the Premier League."

One criticism of Cech so far this term is that he has looked uncomfortable with Arsenal's new approach of playing out from the back, something implemented by Emery.

But Leno has long been used to such a style of play and proved that on Thursday, with the German confident his characteristics will suit Emery in the long run.

"The game that the coach wants is my style," Leno said. "I think I did a good job with the ball, with the passing.

"Of course, the two goals were disappointing, but they scored great goals. Maybe I need a little bit of time.

"It is a little bit more of a risk to play this way because we don't want to kick the ball up front. We want to play because we have the players to play from the back to have more space in the opposite 18-yard box.

"In the first half, the opposition was very deep, so we had big problems getting chances.

"So, when they started to attack more, there were situations where we can create chances by playing from the back, but it needs a little bit of time for the whole team to improve and to get the confidence."

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