Wojciech Szczesny has revealed his love for Arsenal, how he didn’t want to leave and the role smoking played in his departure.
Although many of us suspected this was the reason we thought something more must have happened. Surely Arsene Wenger and his team wouldn’t be so petty as to bin one of the best goalkeepers in the world because of a fag, no matter how cheeky.
“I wanted to be at Arsenal for my whole career,” Woj told the BBC. “It is the club I love. It is the club I still support. I gave everything to play there.
“I regret not having done more there,” he added. “I won two FA Cups and a Community Shield but I would have liked to win at least one Premier League title.
“But sometimes you have to think with your brain, not just your heart.
“I feel like I am a regular guy,” Szczesny added. “I used to smoke. I can’t do too much about it. I got fined by Arsene. I have massive respect for him but because it happened at the same time as I lost my spot in the starting line-up, it got massively overblown.
“I was 20 years old when I started playing in the Premier League. Maybe mentally I wasn’t quite prepared for it and that has earned me a reputation.
“But then you grow up, you mature. Now I am a husband and a father so life changes a little bit.”
Rumours also abounded that the Polish keeper had also fallen out with Gerry Peyton, Wenger’s goalkeeping coach and that the Frenchman had sided with Peyton over Woj.
It’s immensely hard not to feel incredibly bitter about all this. I’ve been a fan of Szczesny’s since he was 16 and as a site we championed him throughout his Arsenal career, even when many others had serious doubt about his ability to make it at the top level.
Arsenal owned a goalkeeper who is viewed as good enough to succeed Gianluigi Buffon by one of the best sides in the world. To allow him to leave for £10.98m verges on the criminal.