Pablo Mari has praised the way Mikel Arteta handled his situation ahead of the January transfer window, leading to his Udinese loan.
Arsenal centre-back Pablo Mari moved on loan to Serie A in the January transfer window, joining Udinese until the end of the season.
Mari had spent a while away from Mikel Arteta’s side before his departure, as Gabriel Magalhaes, Ben White, and Rob Holding were preferred for game-time.
The 28-year-old decided to speak to Arteta about the situation, and whilst the Arsenal manager made him no assurances over his minutes, it seems Mari was still pleased with how the conversation went.
“In the winter, we made commitments together,” Mari said. “I explained my situation to him, my feelings. I don’t play in the last six months. [He said] the plan in the next six months until June is going to be the same.
“I can play, of course, because maybe other centre-backs get injured, there can be a red card, or yellow cards, but it is going to be one, two, maximum three or four games. At the end, I don’t want that for me.
“[Arteta] was a really, really, really good person in that moment. He said to me ‘everything that you need, you deserve that. You were a professional player until the end and you deserve it so everything I can help you, I’m going to do it.’
“I’m so glad to hear that from a coach because it was not an easy moment for me.”
After that, Udinese managed to grind out two 1-1 draws against Lazio and AC Milan – 6th and 1st in the league when Udinese played them, respectively.
So whilst it hasn’t all been smooth sailing, Udinese will be quietly pleased with how things have been going since Mari’s arrival.