Arsenal star relishing ‘challenge’ and tells Arteta conditions to meet over new contract

Mohamed Elneny, Arsenal v Leicester March 2022

Mohamed Elneny has admitted that he “loves” Arsenal and would sign a new contract even without the promise of regular football.

The Egypt international initially arrived at the Emirates Stadium as an Arsene Wenger signing in 2016. While he made 89 appearances under the Frenchman, his game time waned when Unai Emery took charge in 2018.

In fact, after only 17 appearances in 2018/19, Elneny agreed a loan move to Besiktas. It therefore looked like his Arsenal career was over.

However, current boss Mikel Arteta recalled the 29-year-old and he has proved a key part of the team since then.

Elneny‘s future is under the microscope again as he approaches the end of his contract at the end of the season.

Speaking to the Irish Examiner, though, the Arsenal midfielder has insisted that he has no real demands on game time in a potential extension.

Asked if he would stay even if he did not play, the Egyptian said: “Of course. I always love a challenge and give 100 per cent all the time.

“I don’t decide who plays but I keep going in training to show how good I am and to make him play me.

“If I don’t play I keep going until I get my chance. If Arsenal say ‘we want you’ I don’t think about leaving. It’s my family for six years. I love this club.”

Elneny’s game time has albeit waned this season, with Thomas Partey preferred alongside Granit Xhaka by Arteta.

However, Elneny has played each of the last two Premier League games, with Partey out injured.

And with Partey facing a race to make it back before the end of the season, Elneny could finish his Gunners career on a high.

Elneny featuring in Arsenal top-four hunt

Arsenal trio Nuno Tavares, Bernd Leno and Mohamed Elneny

Arsenal have recovered from poor form at the start of the season to be firmly in the hunt for a top-four Premier League finish.

And Elneny performed well in both matches last week, which could turn out to be pivotal for Arsenal.

The Gunners beat Chelsea 4-2 away from home before defeating Manchester United 3-1 in north London.

The two clubs are directly above and below Arsenal, with Tottenham – who sit in fifth – the next huge test for Arteta’s side.

Should Elneny leave, Arsenal could look to invest in their midfield once again.