Dani Ceballos was brought to the Emirates on loan by then-manager Unai Emery, but admits he never really lived up to Arsenal and wants to return to his native Spain.
Real Madrid midfielder Dani Ceballos admits he wanted to leave Arsenal immediately after joining the Gunners on loan during Unai Emery’s time as manager.
With Emery at the helm, Arsenal landed Ceballos’ signature on loan in the summer of 2019. Few Gunners fans can forget his stunning debut against Burnley at home, which saw the Spaniard earn comparisons to Emirates favorite Santi Cazorla after just one game.
However, Ceballos failed to truly reach those heights at any other time during his stay in north London and has since admitted he has never worked at Arsenal and is keen to return to the Spanish capital soon, although he admits there have been some positives for him. serving as Gunners.
Speaking at Universo Valdano, per AS, the midfielder claimed: “I came to Arsenal because Unai Emery contacted me. He came to my house and he told me I was the ideal player for his project in his second year at Arsenal.”
“I saw the rhythm of the competition and I thought, ‘I want to go back to Spain, how long will it take to come back’.
“It’s a very competitive league, very physical and difficult for me to get into a rhythm but it makes you a much better player. I think my time there was fundamental in my career.”
Player’s time with Emery was drastically shortened as the latter was sacked as Arsenal manager just four months after Ceballos arrived and was immediately replaced by Mikel Arteta.
It was actually his time under Arteta that the recent statements are so surprising, as the pair appear to be in a great relationship and Ceballos played a key role in Arsenal’s FA Cup win in 2020.
At the end of the 2019/20 season, Arteta made it clear he valued Ceballos as a player by tying him to a second season on loan a month after bagging the FA Cup.
However, the Spain international’s second season has come and gone without much note as Ceballos’ performances left him and him back at the Santiago Bernabeu, despite previously passionately defending Arteta at a time when criticism was rife.
“Arteta is a coach who I believe will become one of the best in the world in the next few years, but I want to return to the Spanish league,” he told El Larguero.
Ceballos has since won the Champions League with Real Madrid after leaving Arsenal and has featured more regularly for Los Blancos this time, with 18 league games to his name this term.