The Arsenal playmaker is currently training with the Russian national side despite his exclusion from the set-up after Fabio Capello. Is he trying to win him over in a similar style to Beckham at Real Madrid?
Arsenal Football Club certainly have their fair share of players that you might call unwanted. Spare parts who seemed like good ideas at the time but ended up disappointing enough to be discarded wither on-loan or simply out of the first-team picture.
Maraoune Chamakh, Andre Santos, Nicklas Bendtner, Johan Djourou, Park Chu Young; the list goes on.
One player who has been unwanted for a while is Russian international Andrei Arshavin.
When he was signed for the club he was one of Europe’s most wanted players after impressive displays for Russia and Zenit St Petersburg in the seasons previous.
Despite his moments of brilliance, as fleeting as they were, his languid attitude and sometimes lethargic demeanour never truly endeared him to the Arsenal faithful.
That has meant a period of time out of the first-team; in fact the last time he played for the team was on the 20th January in a 15 minute cameo at Stamford Bridge.
With his current deal at the club expiring in the summer he looks all set to leave The Emirates; with the only question being his destination. One thing he has expressed is a desire to stay in England and in particular the London area where his family is settled.
His Russian national side are in action during the international break with a tie in Northern Ireland and a prestige friendly against Brazil at Stamford Bridge next week.
But while his career with Arsenal has stalled that has been reflected at international level. After captaining the side at Euro 2012 he has not featured under the Fabio Capello regime.
Capello has been reluctant to pick any players based outside the Russian Premier League but has also been cutting some of the old guard from the team regardless of their club location.
However Arshavin has not given up on his international career; and appears to have taken a leaf from David Beckham’s playbook with trying to get back on the hardnosed Italian’s good books.
Despite not being included in the Russian team he has took the opportunity to train with the side in London in a bid to retain his fitness and prove his commitment to the national side after it was questioned by fans.
Beckham did a similar thing when he fell out of favour with Capello at Real Madrid after revealing his intent to continue his career in Los Angeles.
He trained hard and proved his commitment to the cause which earned himself a recall under Capello. His performances were a major catalyst in Real Madrid fighting back and winning the La Liga title that season.
If Arshavin can prove his similar commitment he may just win over the notoriously difficult Fabio Capello.
Do you think Andrei Arshavin can get back in the Russia fold?
image: © Ronie Macdonald