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Arsenal Defender Thomas Vermaelen Unfazed By Transfer Rumours

Abhishek Iyer
1.00K   //    16 Jul 2011, 20:22 IST

Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen said he remains unruffled by the club’s reported chasing of other centre back targets and claimed that pressure and competition were part and parcel of playing at a top club. Arsenal have been linked with all and sundry this summer, with Bolton defender Gary Cahill and Blackburn captain Chris Samba leading the list.

Vermaelen remains stoic as ever

But Vermaelen says it makes no difference to the way he approaches his everyday game, and said that it would in fact have a positive reinforcing effect in the long-term, with more quality players fighting for the same places.

He also said that pressure was inevitable playing in an elite club, and players should just learn to deal with it instead of making tame excuses. He cited his first season at the club as an example to how well he had settled in at the club since then. He told The Daily Mirror-

“The club being linked with other players is a thing you have to deal with when you play for a big club,”

“It’s always like that. In any case, if you know there’s somebody behind you and chasing you, then the best comes out of you.

“If you play for a club like Arsenal, you always have this expectation.

“In my first year as well, nobody knew me and you come to this big club and you have to play every game and there are expectations – of course.

“This year, it’s the same again. The only thing you have to do as an individual is to perform well.

“If you’re a good player you have to handle this pressure. Otherwise you don’t belong at this club.”

Regarding Arsenal’s trophy drought and late collapse last season, Vermaelen expressed his disappointment and said that all players were looking to put it right next time round. He said-

“Last year, we came so close.

“Four or five weeks before the end, we were still fighting for the title – it was so close. It’s a difficult one to take.

“But I believe in this team and in how we play – I think that’s the way to play football.”

“The way we play, we can win things – we’re really close.

“In football, you have the small details that make a difference and sometimes you don’t win. Maybe this year we will.”

It remains to be seen whether Arsenal actually buy any center backs, and if they go on and win anything tangible this season instead of being satisfied with fourth place again. Stay tuned for more in this regard.

Abhishek Iyer
24 year old, short term pessimist and long term optimist gooner. If you read any of my stuff and come to the conclusion that I know nothing about football, we\'ve finally reached an agreement.
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