Arsenal left back Andre Santos is hoping that Gunners fans will remain patient with the struggling side.
The Brazilian defender admitted that the losses of Robin van Persie and Alexandre Song have had an impact but he also believes that there is more than enough talent to replace the two men. His message to the disappointed supporters: Arsenal has the talent but just needs more time.
"Of course, we are sad to lose great players like this, but each athlete has their objective and they went after their happiness," Santos told Goal.com through a translator prior to Arsenal's 2-1 defeat to Manchester United. "However, I also believe that this group is very close together and the players who have substituted the ones who left are also with great quality, and I am sure that they will do well."
Van Persie reminded Arsenal of his clinical finishing as he put the Red Devils ahead 1-0 in the game's opening three minutes. The loss to United compounded a recent spell of poor results by Arsenal including a 1-0 loss to Norwich and a 2-0 defeat to Schalke, the club's first loss at home in the Champions League in three years. Furthermore, newcomers Olivier Giroud and Lukas Polodoski have been unable to fill the scoring void vacated by Van Persie.
Santos believes that both strikers are capable of being successful for Arsenal but both are adjusting to playing in a new league and living in new surroundings.
"Of course the team needs consistency," he said. "However, the team has new players coming from different countries and, of course, there is a need to adapt the style of play."
The 29-year-old also points to injuries that have affected some of the team's key top players as part of Arsenal's recent struggles. Once those players get reintegrated into the squad, the results will improve, he explained.
"Also, we have lost some players due to injury who are returning now such as (Jack) Wilshire, Thomas Rosicky and (Abou) Diaby that will give more quality to the squad as well," he said.
The former Fenerbache star recalls his own transition to life in England and believes that his best is ahead of him as he is now used to playing in the Premier League.
"I am totally adapted to the English football and Arsenal, but I think I can always improve.... as I was not playing before for a while," he said. "This is an unique opportunity to show my game and to show the difficulties of the competition as well as to know that we need to be focused all the time."
Santos' early struggles with Arsenal has led to reports linking him with moves back to Turkey or his native Brazil but he has denied any truth to those reports. He insists that he is enjoying his time at the Emirates.
"This is not true," he insisted. "I do not want to leave Arsenal since I am happy here, my family is happy as well in London. I also like the country very much and I hope to fulfill my contract here."
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