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Bernd Leno: My Arsenal gamble has been successful

Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno feels justified in his move to England.

The Germany international spent seven years with Bayer Leverkusen before leaving for the Gunners in the summer of 2018. Leno acknowledges he was taking a risk moving to Arsenal, where Petr Cech was regarded as the No1.

However, now firmly established as manager Unai Emery's first-choice keeper, Leno feels he's improved since arriving over over a year ago from Bayer. Indeed, the 27 year-old says the "brutal" pace and style of the Premier League has forced him to step up his game.

He told Sport Bild via Fussball Transfers: "The change abroad is something special, especially in the goalkeeper position. But be absolutely clear: my plan has worked.

"In the Bundesliga, you are protected, that does not exist here."

Leno admits the supporters at Arsenal and the atmosphere at the Emirates stadium has him convinced he made the right decision leaving the Bundesliga.

"The pace is brutal, the atmosphere fantastic. The football is lived here, it goes back and forth."

Speaking before Sunday's 2-2 draw at Vicarage Road, Leno set out their ambitions for the season - which include going one better in the Europe League. The Gunners reached the final last term in Baku, only to be beaten by Chelsea.

Leno added: "Our goal must be to reach the Champions League, preferably in third place.

"We also want to win the Euro League."

- updated September 16

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Paul Vegas

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