No thanks to the blistering form of Robin Van Persie and his somewhat able assistant Nicklas Bendtner, our 27-year-old attacker gradually lost his automatic shirt and became a peripheral figure five months into his arrival at the club. In the meantime, he has reiterated his desire to play whole-heartedly for the club, and believes his new friends have helped a great deal with his quick integration.
"I understand both the football and the group better, and I now have many friends in this team. So I aim to keep improving and to make a big contribution. Your first pre-season is always difficult, you have to accustom yourself to new training and make new friends, but we’re all together and everything looks fine."
Chamakh was very impressed with the team's tour to Malaysia, China and Germany. According to the headmaster, the team had a swell time sampling diverse cultures: "I think it was a good, new experience for the entire squad," he said.
"It was surprising to see the number of fans Arsenal have over there and I think it proved to us what a big club this is – people across the world demand that you do well. For us it was good to spend time in a different culture, while the supporters could watch us in matches and training, and see a lot of the Club.
"Germany was a bit different. There were fewer supporters around and the training was harder both for us and the staff. But we played a good match against Cologne and had some great facilities there, so we’re happy with how it has gone."