Mohamed Elneny

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Why Elneny fits the bill in new role

Mohamed Elneny

Mohamed Elneny mucked in as much as anyone on tour, whether he was learning about animals at Taronga Zoo in Sydney or trying out Chinese drumming in Beijing.

He had some new experiences on the pitch too after Arsene Wenger decided to shift Elneny from his regular central midfield role to the back three. The boss has spoken before about having a ball-playing centre back flanked by two quick defenders, and he thinks Mo fits the bill.

“Yes he does,” Wenger told “Elneny is a player who has a fantastic mentality and attitude, and his main target is to help the team. When he plays there, of course he does extremely well.

“Of course [he needs to learn the defensive side], but I always felt that a good central midfielder can be a good centre back. With the fact of course that when you’re playing in the back four you have to be decisive in the challenges, you have a bit more flexibility in the middle of a back three. He can do that.

“Overall on tour, I played players like Elneny in a back three and he coped very well. Maitland-Niles sometimes played at centre back as well, even in the big games against Chelsea. 

"You see their strengths and their weaknesses, and you learn a lot about your players and your combinations too. The advantage we have is that we have a good stability in our squad, so I already know who I can combine with who, more or less.”



Mo Elneny signs contract extension

We're pleased to announce that Mo Elneny has signed a new long-term contract with the club.

The midfielder has made 65 appearances for us since joining in January 2016.

He began his senior career with El Mokawloon in the Egyptian Premier League before joining Swiss club Basel in 2013, helping them to three Super League titles.

Mo is an experienced international and was part of the squad that recently helped Egypt qualify for this summer’s World Cup – their first appearance since 1990.

We would like to congratulate Mo on his new contract and look forward to his continued contribution in the coming seasons.


'Elneny's best years are ahead of him'

Arsene Wenger has hailed Mohamed Elneny and believes he has taken big strides forward in recent months.

The 25-year-old's displays, both in midfield and also as part of a back three in pre-season, showcased his versatility, and his manager has been impressed with the progress he has made.

 “He had a good pre-season, he absorbed a huge quantity of work and he takes advantage of it now, so it’s down to where he is needed," Wenger said.

“I will use him as a central defender in a three or in midfield. He is a fantastic team player and he is a credit to your country if you are Egyptian. He is a fantastic boy, we love him here.

“It took him some time to adapt to the intensity of the games and I think he was not aggressive enough for the Premier League [initially]. But now he has added that to his game. 

“People forget that Elneny is 25 years old. He is not 30 - he’s still a young player and his best years are in front of him.”

Player of the month

Elneny voted January Player of the Month

Mohamed Elneny

Congratulations to Mohamed Elneny, who has picked up his first Player of the Month award this season.

The Egypt international produced a number of impressive midfield displays last month, and also helped us reach the Carabao Cup final with a solid defensive showing over two legs against Chelsea.

Elneny edged out Nacho Monreal, Mesut Ozil and Jack Wilshere to top the poll.