Mohamed Elneny insists he would happily sign a new contract at Arsenal after winning the trust of manager Mikel Arteta.
The 28-year-old midfielder has rekindled his career at the Emirates Stadium having been out on loan at Besiktas last season.
Elneny, signed from Basel in January 2016, looked set to be sold in the summer only to work his way into Arteta’s plans.
He has already made 16 Premier League appearances this season, more than in any of his previous years at Arsenal, and hit a fine strike to put the Gunners in charge of their Europa League round of 16 tie against Olympiacos.
The Egypt midfielder is likely to start the second leg in north London tomorrow with the hosts 3-1 ahead and, with his current deal set to expire next year, Elneny made no secret of his desire to stay put.
“Of course, for me I am always loyal to Arsenal,” he said when asked about signing a new contract.
“If Arsenal say to me: ‘Sign a new contract’, of course I would be happy to do this.”
With the arrival of Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid on transfer deadline day, coupled with Dani Ceballos returning on another season-long loan from Real Madrid, there appeared little chance of Elneny being part of the Arsenal set-up for the current season.
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But he has played in some big games and drew plenty of plaudits for his display alongside Partey in a 1-0 win at Manchester United in November.
Arteta helped Elneny fit in
“Before I came back, Mikel didn’t speak to me but after when we came to the start of the season he started to speak to me,” added Elneny.
“And he said: ‘Mo, we have new things now. We have to understand how I want the midfield to play and always if you don’t understand something from the new system you have now, just come to ask me’.
“He was helping me so much to understand the way he wanted us to play and this is what helped me a lot.
“After the Community Shield against Liverpool, he came and sat down with me and he just gave me everything I’ve done, with the pre-season and the game against Liverpool.
“And it was something really good for me to start the season with.
“I expected to come back because I want to always be with the biggest team and I am really happy to be at Arsenal all the time.
“When I was on loan, all the time I was thinking I need to get back to Arsenal to be in the squad, to play like I do now.”