Willian agreed to terminate his three-year contract with Arsenal in August – just 12 months after arriving at the Emirates to much fanfare on a free transfer from Chelsea
Willian has lifted the lid on his unhappiness at Arsenal for the first time since leaving the club to return to Corinthians.
The Brazilian winger agreed to terminate his three-year contract in August – just 12 months after arriving at the Emirates on a free transfer from Chelsea.
Willian joined the Gunners to much fanfare but his time in north London quickly turned into a nightmare as he found the back of the net just once in 37 appearances.
The 33-year-old is relieved to have put his time at Arsenal behind him and reflected on the torrid spell during an eye-opening interview with his new side.
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“I really thought a lot, together with my family and close people. Unfortunately, my time at Arsenal was not good, I wasn’t happy at the club,” Willian told TV Corinthians .
“I don’t need to go into details, but I wasn’t happy and I thought that returning to Brazil was the best option.
“I studied some other opportunities, but I wanted to return to Corinthians, to my home, to be close to my family. It’s the club that projected me to the world, revealed me. The right time to come back was this.”
Willian came through the academy ranks at Corinthians before making his senior debut with the Brazilian club in 2006.
He went on to play for Shakhtar Donetsk, Anzhi Makhachlaka and Chelsea, winning five major honours with the Blues including two Premier League titles.
Willian scored 63 goals for Chelsea and also laid on a steady supply of assists from his berth on the flank, but failed to replicate his output with Arsenal.
Why was Willian’s time at Arsenal such a failure? Comment below.
Gunners technical director Edu recently recalled his conversation with Willian and Mikel Arteta when the player’s unhappiness emerged.
He told Sky Sports : “At the end of the season I came to Willian, me and Mikel, and said: ‘How are you? Because I want you, I need you, to be much more consistent. What is happening?’
“And then he mentioned to us he is not 100 per cent comfortable, and when we heard that we made the decision that we did not want a player here who is not 100 per cent comfortable.”
Edu added: “If not now, it’s my business to try and find the best solution. If it’s a mistake or not, it’s harder to say. You wouldn’t if our season had been better with everyone being more consistent.
“But the most important thing is we tried what we tried, we planned what we planned and if it works or not, we have to find a solution.”
Willian will hope to rekindle his career with Corinthians, where he has been handed the No. 10 jersey.