Mathieu Flamini told Arsenal.com he felt as if he was back at home after signing for Arsenal last week: “I really have the sensation of being back home, playing against Tottenham in a big derby, it was a great emotion, a great feeling.”
The 29 year old versatile midfielder had a baptism of fire of the highest order, with Wilshere forced off just 40 minutes into the North London Derby, Flamini made his first-team return just days after re-signing: “Playing against Tottenham is never easy but it is special for the Club, for the fans and for the players. Of course, for me it was my first game and I wanted to show everyone how committed I am to this club, how I am ready to give everything on the pitch. I hope everyone saw it; I really did my best when I came on.
“I have heard it a lot [that it is like I have never been away]. I feel like I never left. There are players I played with before, and even staff, there are a lot of people still here that I knew before and the [relationship] with the fans was just amazing. I just want to thank everyone for the nice atmosphere on Sunday. It was great.”
Yaya Sanogo, Emiliano Viviano and Mesut Özil joined the club along with Flamini this summer and the French midfielder is confident Arsenal have sufficient quality and belief to challenge for major honours this season: “The quality is very high in this team and at this club, that is the most important thing, to have players of quality because that makes a difference. The team spirit is also very good, and we saw on Sunday that everyone was helping each other on the pitch. That makes a difference in the big games.”
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