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Mertesacker key to Djourou loan

SoccerNews in English Premier League 7 Jan 2013

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Arsenal defender Johan Djourou has revealed that his Gunners team-mate Per Mertesacker advised him to join Hannover on loan.

The 25-year-old failed to make a Premier League appearance for the north London outfit this season, with only two League Cup outings to his name.

And Djourou, who has made 144 appearances for Arsenal since 2004, revealed that fellow defender Mertesacker was key to his decision to join the Bundesliga side until the end of the season and he is hoping for first-team exposure at Hannover after falling down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium.

“Per is a good friend of mine. He told me many positive things about Hannover 96. And he said that I should do that and go there,” Djourou told Bild.

Djourou is a centre-back by preference, and has admitted that he found it difficult adapting to the role of full-back which manager Arsene Wenger used him in last term.

“Last season I had to play right back and I lost a little self-confidence,” Djourou said.

“I have a good athletic quality and I play aggressively against the ball. I always want to play and in Hannover there’s a good opportunity for me to do that. And it’s the perfect club for me.”

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