Abou Diaby admits that a strong pre-season campaign is essential for him as he aims to prove his fitness.

The French midfielder played 45 minutes of Arsenal's 2-0 win against Boreham Wood on Saturday after missing almost the entire 2013/14 campaign through injury.

Diaby was happy to come through unscathed against the Conference South side and believes the game provided a good workout for the team.

"I think it was good occasion for us to get prepared," he told Arsenal Player. "It was a good game against a good team, it was a lovely day as well so we are happy. It was very hot but it was hot for everybody - we just tried to play our game.

Pre-season has been really good so far, we still have three weeks and I hope to complete 90 per cent of it

"I haven't done that [play 45 minutes] for one year so I was really happy to be back in a normal game. I hope it's going to stay like this.

“Pre-season has been really good so far, we still have three weeks and I hope to complete 90 per cent of it and that will be a successful one for me."

Arsenal's next friendly is against the New York Red Bulls and Diaby is looking forward to facing compatriot and Arsenal’s all-time leading goalscorer, Thierry Henry.

"It's always good to travel to New York and we play against a good team and an old friend," he said.

"It's very exciting. It's always good to play against a legend and we look forward to that."

Copyright 2014 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 Isaac Moore 21 Jul 2014