Midfielder Dani Ceballos has posted a goodbye message to Arsenal fans after his second loan from Real Madrid came to an end.
The 24-year-old has spent the last two seasons on loan at the Emirates Stadium but has struggled to live up to expectations, with injuries and a lack of form restricting him to 35 starts across the two campaigns.
The 2-0 win over Brighton, for which he was an unused substitute, was Ceballos’ last match as an Arsenal player as the Gunners have declined the chance to sign him permanently and have instead sent the Spaniard back to Real.
“Thanks Arsenal and thanks to all Gunners,” Ceballos wrote on Instagram. “For welcoming me with so much love from the very first day I wore this jersey. For letting me experience the feeling of being a Gunner and allowing me to be a part of your family all this time.
“A complicated year – for many reasons – has come to its end. Especially for having missed the chance of living home matches in the Emirates with our supporters. Still, I assure you that I will never forget your warmth and support in every moment.
“I am sure that Arsenal, being a historic and great team, will soon be back on top, winning championships and being a reference as it is and always has been. This club, and especially its supporters, deserve it, and I am confident that they will achieve it.
“Thanks to all those people who are part of the team: coaches, kit men, medical staff, communications and marketing team, employees, managers and especially the supporters. All those persons who so often work quietly giving all they have for this great club.
“I want you to know that I have always worked very hard and tried my very best for this crest and this jersey. I wish you all the best and the success that I’m sure will come.”
While Ceballos may be heading back to Real, Arsenal are keen to ensure teammate Martin Odegaard does not join him.
Mikel Arteta recently revealed that he plans to speak to Real about a permanent deal for the Norway international, who has enjoyed an excellent few months since joining the club on loan in January.