Mertesacker ready for school

Image: Mertesacker: Looking forward to a new challenge as he prepares to link up with Arsenal

Per Mertesacker is looking forward to 'the first day at school' as he prepares to link up with his new Arsenal team-mates.

Arsenal new boy to say his farewells to Bremen

Per Mertesacker is looking forward to 'the first day at school' as he prepares to link up with his new Arsenal team-mates. The Germany international joined the Gunners from Werder Bremen on transfer deadline day, but has yet to train with the Premier League club due to the international break. He is due to collect his belongings and say farewell to family, friends and neighbours in Bremen on Wednesday before travelling to London on Thursday. Mertesacker has so far only had a fleeting glimpse of his new surroundings and is eager to get started on his fresh challenge at the Emirates Stadium.

Exciting

"It is exciting," he told Germany's dpa agency. "It is a new phase in my life and I am really looking forward to it, but I also feel nervous. "It is like before the first day at school. "Now I have a new challenge in a new country, a new style of play and a new language and I am ready for it." Mertesacker returned to national team duty in Tuesday's 2-2 draw with Poland after being left out of the 6-2 win over Austria on Friday, and he was delighted to be back in action after a demanding week. "It was great to be part of the team again," he said. "It is going to be an open race for places - we have a lot of options for next year (at Euro 2012) in the centre of the defence. "There are four or five top players there."

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