Bellerin: Wenger the main reason I stayed at Arsenal

The Gunners full-back has extended his contract at the Emirates Stadium despite interest from Barcelona and says that the manager’s trust in him played a big part in his decision

Arsenal right-back Hector Bellerin has revealed that manager Arsene Wenger is the main reason behind him extending his contract at the club.

The Spaniard put pen to paper on a new six-and-a-half-year deal on November 21 after an impressive spell at the club that has seen him emerge as one of the Gunners’ most important players.

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As reported by Goal, Barcelona were interested in taking Bellerin back to Camp Nou and had seen him as the ideal long-term replacement for Dani Alves, who left for Juventus in the summer.

The contract extension seems to put an end to the Catalan club’s hopes of taking him back to Spain in the near future and Bellerin is adamant that Wenger played a big role in his decision to stay put.

He said, as quoted by the Daily Mirror: “Arsene was really influential for me on the moment when I signed to come over here.

“He was there talking to me when I first got to the Emirates and he was one of the reasons why I signed with the club. 

“Just the confidence he has given me, especially after not the greatest debut at Dortmund – my first games weren’t the best!  

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“From then, I always knew I wanted to repay him and that’s what I’m doing right now and obviously that is why I wanted to stay at the club.

“This year we knew it was going to be hard [to win the title] because there are so many teams with good coaches. We knew it was going to be really hard. But we’ve got the team and we’ve got the manager. 

“We’ve got everything we need to be up there, so we are going to try our best, definitely.”

Bellerin has made 14 appearances for Arsenal in all competitions so far this season but is expected to be out of action until at least the middle of December with an ankle injury.