February 28, 2021

Mido on why Elneny will fit into Arteta’s plans at Arsenal

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The Egypt midfielder has played in the Gunners’ last two games since he returned from his loan spell at Besiktas

Former Tottenham Hotspur and Middlesbrough striker Ahmed Hossam Mido thinks Mikel Arteta’s playing style gives Mohamed Elneny “a golden opportunity” to remain at Arsenal.

The 28-year-old struggled for regular first-team action in the last two seasons at the Emirates Stadium after falling out of favour under Unai Emery.

He spent the 2019-20 season on loan in the Turkish Super Lig with Besiktas where he helped the Black Eagles secure a European spot.

Elneny returned to North London in August and he has played in Arsenal’s last two games – a friendly match against MK Dons where he scored a goal and in the FA Community Shield against Liverpool on Saturday.

The Egypt international turned in a solid performance in the middle of the park as the Gunners pipped the Premier League champions on penalties to win their first title in the 2020-21 campaign.

Mido, who is currently a football manager, disclosed the conversation he had with Arteta about his compatriot in 2018 and how his performance against the Reds could make him part of the Spanish manager’s plans.

“I have met Arteta in Wales two years ago and I have asked him about Mohamed Elneny,” Mido said on his YouTube channel.

“Arteta replied: ‘Elneny is a very good player and I like him because he is not easily dispossessed.’

“I think Arteta’s style of playing out from the back grants Elneny a golden opportunity to stay at Arsenal.

“Elneny played very smartly against Liverpool and this could make him part of Arteta’s project at Arsenal.”

Prior to their Community Shield triumph, Arteta praised the Egypt star but was coy about his future.

“In the moment that he is with us, he will be given all our support and the best possible environment for them to perform as high as they can,” he said.

“We don’t know [if he will stay]. The sixth of October is still too far, as I said. It’s pretty unpredictable to know what’s going to happen.”

Elneny moved to the Emirates Stadium from Swiss outfit Basel in January 2016. In 2018, he penned an extension with Arsenal that will keep him at the club until June 2022.

He started his European career at Basel in 2013 after developing through the youth ranks of Egyptian clubs Al Mokawloon and Al Ahly.