Bayern Munich winger Serge Gnabry opened up to his life at Arsenal and characterized Per Mertesacker ‘s impact as especially optimistic, despite persistently being “hard” at the center back. As he transferred from Stuttgart to Arsenal the attacker was a teenager, admitting that the move was a significant one for him.

In an interview with The Players’ Tribune, the 24-year-old shared the most important unimportant thing of his life. 

He started telling that he will never forget the first time he met Arsène Wenger. He had just turned 16 and was very nervous. Leaving a Germany village of 6000 people where he had his whole life to join Arsenal was a huge surprise for him. 


Gnabry admits he is very grateful to Mertesacker, who now works for the Gunners Academy, for the way he was driving him when he was younger.

“He was just so harsh on me, but in a good way,” said the 24-year-old to the Tribune of the Players.

“To me at Arsenal he was like an older brother.”

“Everything he says is so intense. He is so tall, so he looks down on you trying to be intimidating, but he’s kind of nice as well. Imagine an Arnold Schwarzenegger or something truly friendly. That’s Per. And whatever I did in training, afterward he would come up to me and start shouting, like, ‘Serge, remember where you came from! You have come to Stuttgart! Humility, humility, humility!”

He added: “Per knew how fast everything changes. You’re 15 and you’re still asking your parents for allowance money. Then you’re 17 or 18 and you’re making more money than your whole family. Imagine that. You just can’t cope with it.”

Gnarby remembers when he broke into the first team. He revealed that he started spending money on so much unnecessary stuff.

After a two-month break triggered by the coronavirus pandemic, Gnabry is expected to return to play Sunday, with Union Berlin Bayern’s first opponents aiming to close the Bundesliga championship.


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