Danny Welbeck says “it was a wonderful feeling” to mark his return to the Arsenal first team with a crucial stoppage-time winner against Leicester City.

The England international flicked home Mesut Ozil’s free-kick soon after coming on as an 83rd-minute substitute to move the Gunners just two points off the top of the Premier League.

As soon as I saw Mesut line it up, I just tried to get myself into a nice position, in behind the line of defence. Thankfully it came in my direction and I got the right glance on it

Welbeck was making his first Arsenal appearance since April 26, 2015, and was quick to praise the club’s medical team for helping him regain his fitness.

“It’s been a long time off the pitch, the longest period of time that I’ve spent off playing matches in my career,” he told Arsenal Player. “It’s difficult, and with a few headlosses along the way.

“I think you’ve just got to try to stay positive. I had a lot of great help behind the scenes with the medical staff and with James Haycock, who worked with me personally and was great. I think hard work eventually pays off.

“It was a wonderful feeling to get that winning goal at the end. It was just very important for us to get the three points.

“With the type of game it was, it was close right until the end and thankfully we got the goal.

“As soon as I saw Mesut line it up, I just tried to get myself into a nice position, in behind the line of defence. Thankfully it came in my direction and I got the right glance on it.

“I don’t even know what I was doing [afterwards], the facials were going crazy! I’ve seen a couple [of pictures] and it was just euphoria after and I jumped in the crowd.”
 

Danny Welbeck celebrates his crucial winner
Danny Welbeck celebrates his crucial winner

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Nik Brumsack 14 Feb 2016