Hector Bellerin has hit back at the critics of his new vegan diet, telling the media he feels better physically since making the change.

Recently Alan Brazil made the claim that Bellerin’s form was suffering from his new eating habits, admittedly in a light-hearted manner.

Nonetheless, diet is obviously something professional athletes take very seriously nowadays, so Arsenal’s right-back made a point to explain his decision in a recent interview with MR PORTER.

“When it comes to nutritional literature, everyone is very old-school… ‘You need milk, eggs, meat!’ But actually, you are able to get the same amount of protein, carbohydrates and vitamins from plants,” he explained. “I used to be that guy who snoozed (through) the alarm 20 times. Then all of a sudden I was waking up with the sun at 7am.”

The truth is that Alan Brazil’s opinions on nutrition are extremely outdated. As Bellerin says, it’s perfectly possible to get the same nutrients from plants as milk, eggs and meat, and without the negative side-effects of non-vegan food.

The proof is in the pudding, in this case. Bellerin has played over 4,000 minutes this season, for the very first time in his senior career. Far from holding him back, the Spaniard’s new diet has allowed him to reach new levels of fitness.

Funnily enough, none of the steak-eating members of the squad have reached the same number of minutes. I guess that’s just a crazy coincidence?

I doubt the footballing world will come around to Bellerin’s point of view anytime soon. The game is still too saturated with the likes of Alan Brazil. If he keeps proving his new fitness levels though, perhaps some more players might consider it.