"Spurs are a great club, they showed that they can play really good football, but are they really better than Arsenal? I don't think so."
Wojciech Szczesny after defeat to Tottenham in October

“It’s weird, definitely, and you have to be really careful. People are always watching and sometimes it makes me laugh. It’s a story in the papers if I get a tattoo or move house - I do find that really strange. It’s part and parcel of football now, you have to deal with it and be professional."
Jack Wilshere on getting used to fame

“I never imagined myself in this position a year ago when I was playing in the high school championship qualifiers in Japan. I can tell I am improving a lot through training sessions with my team-mates and I feel quite positive when I dribble past the international players. I was too shy and nervous when I first joined the team. Now I feel more settled living in this environment."
Ryo on finding his feet in English football

"Sometimes I'll go on Twitter the day before a game to see what the fans are saying and people are suggesting I'll deal with any players they don't like - 'Frimpong will get him' and that kind of thing. They seem to have created a 'wanted' list of people for me to go for - I don't know what they think of me!  I think I'm going to have to make a YouTube video to show the fans the other things that I am good at. But then again, I'm not exactly Lionel Messi!"
Emmanuel Frimpong on being more than just a 'hard man'

“I don’t know what I would have done had I not become a footballer. I’ve always wanted to do that, even when my family would try to stop me playing football so that I went to school. They wanted me to go to a normal school. I had to bring someone to them who had faith in my skills to convince them."
Gervinho on how he almost missed out on a career in football

“My mates tease me, calling me the White Cafu!”
Laurent Koscielny on playing at right back

"I am up for [five, 10 or 15 years]. But it depends first of all on my club. Do they want me to stay? Then it depends on my health as well because that is something that you consider when you get to my level. It demands a lot of energy to win football games."
Arsène Wenger on what the future holds

"It was amazing [to play against him]. For a defender to test your skill against the best, to play against the kind of player that can make the difference, it was amazing. Barcelona always try to find solutions on the pitch so it is down to you to make it as hard as possible for them. I think we did that well"
Johan Djourou on facing Lionel Messi

"How much Arsenal are loved here in Asia and how much the Premier League has penetrated Asia [has been positive]. In China and Malaysia we are starting to become really popular so that is a positive sign. We have had a good experience as a team together."
Arsène Wenger on his satisfaction with the summer tour

"For me it's the best game I've experienced in terms of quality and intensity. They had the ball, they went for it. We had the ball, we went for it. I've never experienced a game with so much quality on the pitch from both teams."
Cesc Fabregas on beating Barcelona 2-1 at the Emirates

“Me and Robin just love playing together. Over the past few years I have had my injuries and he has had his so we have not been able to sustain a run of games together.  But this year you can see signs that we just know where each other is going to be on the pitch. To be honest it makes it is easier for both of us. Robin is one of the best strikers in the world right now and a great leader too."
Theo Walcott on his understanding with Robin van Persie

"My favourite players are those who have a normal talent but make a great career. That's what I respect the most, the guy who takes the absolute maximum out of his potential. When you are young, you learn as you age that life is not as easy as it looks at 20. At 20, to be rigorous, to be consistent, to be focused, is not natural. These players have to make their life between 20 and 30. They have to sacrifice a part of their life. I often say to people, 'look, George Bush became President of the United States. At 40, he says himself that he was an alcoholic.' At 40 years of age in football there is no comeback, but you can still make a life for a normal person in a normal job. In sport you have to understand what is important between 20 and 30.”
Arsène Wenger on his favourite type of players

"For me I do appreciate assists as much as a proper goal. It's so important to have that. Luckily enough we live in a world now where people do recognise good assists. Before it was more about the goalscorer and he was the main man but people do realise that the guy that makes that final pass is just as important. We all know that it's important that the assists get the credit too, which is very important in my opinion. For me personally, if I could choose between a tap-in or a really good assist, I would choose the assist all day long."
Robin van Persie reveals his preference for assists over tap-ins

"Mikel has taken a big importance in our team very quickly. Of course I knew about his talent, but he is a winner. He wants to win. He is a perfectionist guy who wants to give his heart to the team to win football games. He is absolutely fantastic."
Arsène Wenger sings the praises of Mikel Arteta

"I told the lads I'm going to grow long hair if we draw England. It would be fantastic. You might remember the goalkeeper who played against England in 1973 [Jan Tomaszewski]. You should all remember him. So I'll grow the long hair and try to do the job as well as he did. I might have to wear a wig because there won't be enough time to grow it."
Wojciech Szczesny before the Euro 2012 draw

"I got a Twitter account to get involved with the fans and get their opinions. It’s helpful to know what they are thinking, the fans are the most important people at a football club and to know what they are thinking does help us. I think it was Cesc who got me into it, he was always on there and I remember him around the hotel always on his phone on Twitter. I got it, and thought it’s not that serious and then started getting more and more followers. All of a sudden you get addicted to it. Now Robin van Persie and me are having a little competition on who is going to get the most followers and at the moment I’m leading."
Jack Wilshere on his Twitter profile

"Tony Adams was a legend here. He is a special one for me. When I was looking at English football I always looked to Arsenal and he was one of the great defenders when I was ten or 12 years old. I like the players [like Adams] very much - I have enjoyed seeing them over the years."
Per Mertesacker on his childhood Arsenal idol

"If someone had told me that I would now be playing for Arsenal, that I would have beaten Lionel Messi's Barcelona team and had been called up for France, I would not have believed it. It has been two crazy years."
Laurent Koscielny on his rapid rise

"For me Robin is a great leader. You would not have predicted that [at the start], that's credit to him. If you had asked me seven or eight years ago I would not have predicted that he would become captain of Arsenal Football Club. His evolution has been outstanding, not only as a human being but as a player too."
Arsène Wenger on Robin van Persie's maturity

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source
31 Dec 2011