Hector Bellerin’s future at Arsenal looks uncertain with right-back indicating he sees himself staying at Real Betis – the club he has supported since his childhood.
Bellerin joined Arsenal’s academy from Barcelona at the age of 16 in 2011, and after making his debut in the first team he quickly became a fan favorite in the Emirates.
The Spaniard has earned cult status in north London with his offensive displays and London accent, and has even worn the captain’s armband on several occasions.
However, Bellerin’s relationship with the club quickly broke under current Gunners boss Mikel Arteta with the full-back no longer being the first choice.
The 26-year-old finally made a loan to LaLiga side from Real Betis over the summer, the team he supported as a child thanks to his former footballer and Sevilla-born father.
Bellerin has played for Betis four times since moving to the city of Seville and is already considering his long-term future at the club with his contract with Arsenal expiring in 2022.
“I don’t know, but I always said if I didn’t want to be here next season I wouldn’t have come from the start,” Bellerin told El Desmarque.
“There are a lot of things to decide, but what I want to do is enjoy this season when I’m here. And what must happen will happen.
Bellerin reportedly took a hefty pay cut to make the move happen, having wanted to join the club he supported as a child, having previously admitted that all of his first football shirts as a child were Betis kits.
And he hinted that his love for the club would make the decision to stay easy, despite the reduced salary offered in southern Spain.
“It is clear that money is important because it is our job. But I think that in football, this love of sport, of the club, is being lost, ”he said.
“And for me, having understood and felt this feeling from childhood, there are things that you put first.
“This last year and a half has made us rethink a lot of things. For me and for everyone else it was an effort to get the deal done, not just from a money perspective.
“Also how much it cost us to get here. In the end, these efforts paid off and I had other priorities when I made my decision.
Bellerin was both politically and socially active during his time in England, commenting on politics, while also joining environmental campaigns, including buying a stake in Forest Green Rovers.
Mikel Arteta has brought in Takehiro Tomiyasu to replace Bellerin at right-back, with the Japan international already earning praise for his early performances.
However, the Arsenal manager recently commented on the situation, with Bellerin clearly still being admired in North London.
“Finding someone like Hector is not easy,” Arteta said. “He grew up here with us and is loved by everyone at the soccer club.
“I must have said goodbye to him sadly but at the same time I had to understand his position.
“He needed a new challenge, he’s been needing a new challenge for a while now. After long discussions, we decided to let him go because it was the right thing for him too. He always told me about playing at Betis one day, we talked about it.
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