Arsenal star Jorginho reveals Mikel Arteta TWICE tried to sign him for the Gunners before he joined from Chelsea - as the Italian opens up on impact of Kai Havertz and Declan Rice on the title-chasers

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On the back of committing his future to Arsenal, Jorginho is in a reflective mood.

His new one-year contract was announced on Thursday, a reward for being a crucial squad member for Mikel Arteta.

The 32-year-old has played 35 times in all competitions for the Gunners this season and Arteta has long thought highly of his man.

For the north London club's most crucial matches, Jorginho has been given the nod. That includes the two league games against Manchester City, and being used in all but one of Arsenal's Champions League matches.

More to the point, Arteta had pursued the Italian nearly 10 years ago when the midfielder was at Napoli from 2014 to 2018.

Jorginhio (pictured) has opened up on how Mikel Arteta tried to sign him twice for Arsenal before his eventual move

Jorginhio (pictured) has opened up on how Mikel Arteta tried to sign him twice for Arsenal before his eventual move

Jorginhio (pictured) has opened up on how Mikel Arteta tried to sign him twice for Arsenal before his eventual move

The midfielder put pen to paper on a new one-year contract to stay with the Gunners on Thursday

The midfielder put pen to paper on a new one-year contract to stay with the Gunners on Thursday 

The midfielder said he expects his manager (right) to pledge his long-term future to the club soon

Jorginho says: 'When he (Arteta) was at City and I was in Naples, that was the first time (he tried signing me) and then he tried twice when he was here and it didn't happen.

'But now fortunately it happened. I am here, happy, having the opportunity to work together with him and learning a lot from him.'

Speaking of contracts, Arteta has one more year left on his. The Spaniard has revolutionised the club, including going so close to a first Arsenal league title since 2004 in the previous campaign, and Jorginho firmly expects Arteta to commit his future to the north London club.

'I feel that he could stay way longer,' he says.

'I feel he feels good here and I honestly don't see him going. It is really important for the club for him to stay because him with Edu and the board, the whole club, they created something special. I don't believe he wants to go as well.'

Jorginho had previously warned everyone of Kai Havertz's ability, the German having endured a difficult period in the first half of the season. Havertz has since come good, scoring 12 and providing six assists in the Premier League this season.

'I always knew because I know Kai,' he explains.

'That is part of the game as well, isn't it? I spoke with him as well: "Stay calm, let them talk, keep doing your job as you always do. Work hard and you are going to come through this even better".

He went onto reveal how he had told Kai Havertz (pictured) to keep working when he was receiving criticism

He went onto reveal how he had told Kai Havertz (pictured) to keep working when he was receiving criticism

The stars know each other well from their times at Chelsea and are now flourishing in red

The stars know each other well from their times at Chelsea and are now flourishing in red

Jorginho described midfield partner Declan Rice (right) as 'an incredible player' who runs too much in training

'And that is what has happened I think. And I am really happy for him. He is an amazing, amazing guy and he deserves everything to go really well for him.

'You hear those things (criticism), you feel them and it is up to you how you take them. You can take them and let them get you down or you take the criticism and use it as a motivation. I think he used them as a motivation to prove them wrong and he did and I am really glad.'

Another fellow midfielder who has made a sheer impact is Declan Rice. The £105million man is arguably the signing of the season and has been a vital part of Arsenal's side.

On Rice's impact, he adds: 'I think he is growing every single day. He is a humble guy, he wants to learn and he works hard so much and sometimes I tell him, "You are running too much in training today, calm down a little bit".

'He is like "Jori, I just go". I say, "No, no, save those legs a little bit". He is an incredible player, he adds to any team in the world and we are glad he joined us and helped us and he will help England for sure.'

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