MX23RW : Thursday, February 25 17:02:31| >> :60:419:419:

Mikel Arteta: 'Ankle injury delayed new contract'

Mikel Arteta says that the signing of his new Arsenal contract was delayed by injury.

Mikel Arteta has said that an ankle injury he suffered last season delayed the signing of a new Arsenal contract.

The Spaniard missed a large part of last season due to the injury and signed a 12-month contract extension in June.

"We had a chat in the middle of the season with the manager, Ivan [Gazidis] and Dick [Law] and I knew exactly what they were thinking about me," Arteta told the club's official website.

"My desire was to stay here so I was very relaxed about signing it. We left it until the end, we got it signed and I am so pleased to stay here.

"I was injured for the last six months with an ankle surgery, that's why I wanted to wait, to see how I was feeling about the end of the season and if I could have another go at this level. We waited, they were really keen to maintain me on the team and that was my first option, so I'm really happy to stay."

Arteta has made 101 appearances since joining the Gunners in 2011.

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South African Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis looks on before the English Premier League football match between Queens Park Rangers and Arsenal at Loftus Road in London on May 4, 2013
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