Dubbed 'Ryodinho' during his spell at Feyenoord, it was not long before the Dutch club's fans grew to adore him. It was another learning curve for the young winger, who says the experience was a worthwhile one.
"I was a bit more confident about what I was doing in Holland," he told arsenal.com. "But the Premier League is on a totally different level. In England it is easy to lose the ball if your passing is loose. Being able to judge is crucial.
"I learned a lot about the importance of first touch. This is particularly important to my style of attacking.
"Arsène Wenger emphasises this and I want to focus more and more on it too. We have a lot of training in tight spaces which makes me concentrate on how to make most of my first touch.
"I also pay attention to Robin van Persie when he plays. He can release defenders with just one touch - he is so good at it."