Chamakh glad to be free

Marouane Chamakh celebrates Arsenals third goal at Villa Park
Image: Chamakh: Loving Arsenal life

Marouane Chamakh is glad he was a free transfer after a blistering start to his Arsenal career.

Morocco striker enjoying blistering start to his Arsenal career

Marouane Chamakh is glad he was a free transfer after a blistering start to his Arsenal career. The former Bordeaux striker has already found the net on 10 occasions since his summer switch. He believes being a free transfer has helped his good start, as well as his killer instinct to take advantage of injuries to fellow strikers Robin van Persie and Nicklas Bendtner. Speaking ahead of Saturday's clash with Fulham, he told The Sun: "I told myself I would need a year or two to be up to scratch. "I used to read articles about former French league players who were abroad, about their struggles. I knew I would be homesick when I left my cocoon in Bordeaux. "But I didn't cost the club anything. If I had been bought for £18million, different things would have been expected from me at the start. "I was lucky that two centre-forwards from last season got injured (Van Persie and Bendtner). I played and profited from that. "Points are so valuable here that you have to force yourself to be a killer. "That's why they count sending offs and the penalties you've earned in the Premier League.

Forged mentality

"I have forged this mentality over the four months and you can see that in the stats. "I was always told, ever since my first season as a pro, 'Be more selfish'. It took a while. I improved last year under Laurent Blanc when I scored 15 goals. "He made me understand that my stats had to count. It's even more the case with Arsenal. I can no longer be satisfied with playing well, I need goals. "I play through the middle more now, rather than going out wide, and I'm trying things I wouldn't have done a year ago, like that goal against Braga when I played a double one-two with Jack Wilshere, or the one with the outside of my foot against Wolves. "In another era, I would have looked to pass it. I like the fact I'm being seen in a different way, rather than just Chamakh and his heading ability. "I'm showing that I'm just as much at ease when we play quickly on the ground. "Having Cesc Fabregas behind me is awesome. "It's so easy, I make a run without looking and the ball arrives right in front of me, not 50cm away. "He sees everything before the others and it means I have to raise my game and I have no right to waste such passes. "I think he's happy with me, he's clear about what runs he wants me to make to score."
Increased competition
Chamakh says he is pleased Van Persie and Bendtner are now back as it increases competition and he is convinced the Gunners can win silverware this term. "The squad is ready, we have nothing to envy, the squad is ready to go and get at least one title," he said. "Competition for places is always healthy, Bendtner and Van Persie are back. "I think it gives the coach another option, for the turnover first of all. It can't be a negative kind of pressure, because all three players can stay at the top level. "I'm not putting myself under pressure, Bendtner and Van Persie's returns motivate me to keep my level, and to progress even more."

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