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Arsene Wenger had the tendency to sign young, unknown players from lesser leagues when he was at Arsenal.
Not all of those acquisitions were successful and one of them is Tomas Danilevičius, who arrived at the north London club from Swiss side Lausanne in 2000.
CalcioNapoli24 had a chat with the Lithuanian and he opened up on how the move to the Premier League side materialised.
“They had been following me for some time, ever since my time at Club Brugge. Then they followed me even when I played in the national team. In the summer came Arsenal’s call and they asked to take me to London. A club like this can’t be refused,” Danilevičius said.
Arsenal then had several high-profile players in the squad and the manner in which they welcomed Danilevičius has left a mark on him.
“Although there were so many champions, they welcomed me as one of them. I was nobody compared to them, but they treated me like one of them and that struck me a lot. They were all quiet boys,” he explained.
At that time, the Gunners had Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry, Kanu and Sylvain Wiltord in the attacking division and Wenger tried to increase competition by signing Danilevičius.
The 41-year-old gave an insight on the message received from the former boss when he joined Arsenal.
“A master like Wenger was able to handle all those champions. As soon as I arrived, he said ‘Watch your competitors, who they are (Bergkamp, Henry, Wiltord and Kanu). You are one of them and you understand how important this team is. We consider you one of us’,” Danilevičius explained.
Unfortunately for Danilevičius, the move to Arsenal didn’t work out and he made only three appearances for the Gunners.