Arsenal full-back Andre Santos adapting to England
Andre Santos, 29, arrived at the Emirates stadium with the Gunners in turmoil and, despite initial criticism, has come through strong to prove his worth as an attacking full-back.
Yet, despite his forward-thinking nature, the Brazilian feels he is modifying his style to suit Arsenal's needs:
“Brazilian full-backs especially are brought up to attack," he told Thursday's Evening Standard. It’s a very attacking position in Brazilian football. But when they are transferred to Europe they have to attack less because that’s the way football is played here.
“So whoever comes from Brazilian football into Europe needs to improve their defensive aspects but maybe Brazilian defenders are a bit under-rated in that part of their football. I believe that I learnt a lot on that side of my game in Turkish football. I have not come here straight from Brazil so my background is not the same as others. I hope to improve more on my defending now I’m in England.”
Now able to speak some English, having taken lessons, the former Corinthians full-back believes he is now well settled in North London.
“I think I am totally adapted to English football now,” he said. “I’ve always thought that this is one of the best leagues in the world so I’m very happy to be part of the Premier League.
“I get on well, football-wise, with my team-mates and also off the pitch. There’s no doubt a professional athlete should always be looking to improve in everything they do. I know I can improve in every area — a little bit defensively, a little bit offensively, my positioning on the field for example. There’s always room for improvement, that’s what footballers look for.”