• Primera Liga

Vela fears Arsenal return

ESPN staff
April 26, 2013
Carlos Vela wants to remain with Real Sociedad © Getty Images

Arsenal flop Carlos Vela hopes the Gunners do not activate a bargain basement buy-back clause in his contract now he is coming good on his potential at Real Sociedad.

After joining the Gunners in 2005, Vela, 24, made just three Premier League starts under Arsene Wenger before joining Sociedad on loan in 2011. An impressive return of 12 goals and seven assists convinced the Liga side to pay €3.5 million to sign him permanently.

The Mexico international has rewarded the San Sebastian club by playing an integral role in helping them to the brink of Champions League qualification, and hopes his fine form does not convince his former club to exercise their right to snap him up again.

"It could happen at any time, but I don't want to think about it," Vela, who can be re-purchased by Arsenal for just €4 million, told L'Equipe. "My life is here, and it's wearing this shirt that I want to discover European football next year."

With Vela having contributed 13 goals and eight assists to Sociedad's Liga cause already, the club will be equally keen to keep him. The former Guadalajara forward believes his talents are finally coming to the fore as they are more suited to the Spanish rather than the English game.

"It's physical, and too direct. I prefer possession football and playing it on the floor," Vela, who spent the latter half of the 2010/11 season on loan at West Bromwich Albion, one of five clubs Arsenal shipped him out to, said, adding Sociedad coach Philippe Montanier's positioning of him was the factor behind his impressive strike rate.

"Because I'm purely left-footed and can't do anything with my right, I was often stuck out on the left wing, and my main task on the pitch was to send crosses in. Now, I play all over the place, even on the right, and I arrive in front of goal on my good foot."

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