Per Mertesaker has talked up the importance of the festive period as he closes in on his return from injury.

The defender has been out injured since the beginning of the season and has only just begun training with the first team.

Arsenal are set to play two games in six days over the festive period, but, while he won’t be fit enough to play, Mertesacker has revealed he will attend both games to support the team.

One can’t ignore the importance of the festive period to football fans in England, it is the period which most people look out for in the calendar and Mertesacker believes the players needs to be at their best this period.

“We have two games coming up that I probably won’t play in. I can relax a little bit more but I’m going to be with the lads for most of the time to give them support.

“I cannot switch off, I need to train every day to get fit. It will be a different one for me because I won’t have the pressure of playing games, but I’ll train every single day to make sure I’m match fit as soon as possible.

“To spend some time with the family will be good but this is a very important period for us due to our last week, where we’ve struggled performance-wise and results-wise.

“It’s going to be busy, it’s going to be tough and it’s going to be competitive but if you want to be in a good position for 2017, you need to step it up now.”

Following back to back defeats to Everton and Manchester City, Mertesacker’s words can’t be any truer.

Not just the defender, the whole team cannot afford to switch off now as a defeat this period could all but end our title hopes.

It’s definitely going to be an hectic week but i’m hoping we will come through unscathed.


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