Hector Bellerin has revealed that when he first joined Arsenal from Barcelona in 2011, the right-back wondered what he and teammate Jon Toral had gotten themselves into.

  • Bellerin exhausted after first training session with Arsenal
  • Barcelona did more ball work compared to Gunners
  • Right-back currently linked with Barcelona return

When Bellerin moved to north London from Barcelona six years ago, the right-back had a bit of a rude awakening when it came to Arsenal’s training sessions.

The 22-year-old recalls feeling exhausted, as the La Liga team do far more work with the ball in training, whereas Arsene Wenger likes to also work on the overall fitness of his players.

“We were blowing, we had no breath whatsoever [in early training sessions],” Bellerin told Arsenal Player.

“We were thinking ‘what have we got ourselves into? This is not what we came here to do!” But then in the afternoon we played some football.

“That was what struck us the most though. When we were back at Barcelona everything was with the ball, even every single physical activity, it always involved the ball.

“So it was a bit different to us but by the second season I wasn’t one of the last players in the runs, I was one of the first, so you could see the improvement I had made physically.

“That’s certainly the thing that struck me the most at first.”

These comments weren’t made recently. In fact, Arsenal originally printed them in their magazine at the beginning of May.

The timing is interesting, since the Spaniard is currently being heavily linked with a move back to his former club.

Barcelona are apparently looking to re-sign the defender, since they never truly replaced Dani Alves when he left for Juventus last year.

However, the Gunners are demanding £44m since Bellerin only signed a new six-year deal at the end of 2016, which the Catalans aren’t keen on.