Arsenal’s Carl Jenkinson says he feels like a West Ham player

The loaned defender has spoken out about his connection to the Hammers after starting a second stint at the Boleyn Ground.

Arsenal loanee Carl Jenkinson has spoken out about his connection to West Ham and admitted to The London Evening Standard that he is glad to have returned to the Boleyn Ground this season.

The England under-21 star spent last term with the Hammers and was one of the team’s most consistent players under Sam Allardyce, impressing both defensively and in his ability to get forward.

With the likes of Hector Bellerin and Mathieu Debuchy ahead of him at the Emirates Stadium, Jenkinson has been farmed out to Slaven Bilic’s men for this term again.

The versatile defender has admitted that he is glad to be back at West Ham and turned down offers from other clubs to return.

“Being on loan can be a little strange because another club own you but I doubt if there’s many loan players who have felt as comfortable and happy as I’ve been at West Ham,” Jenkinson told The London Evening Standard.

“I feel every bit a West Ham player, especially after last season. I was welcomed by everyone at the club, the fans. I love my time here and feel very connected to the club.

“As a footballer, you’re going from year to year anyway, always proving yourself and you’re on show all the time anyway — every game you play is an audition. I’m really happy to be back.

“It was dependant, though, on who was coming in as the manager because you need to feel you’re in his plans and that he rates you.

“When the gaffer arrived I was made aware he really wanted me to come back, I spoke to him on the telephone and found out what he wanted from me. I liked what I heard.

“There were a few other clubs interested but it was clear from the start that I wanted to come back here.”

West Ham have ambitions of a successful season and proved their ability with an opening day victory over Jenkinson’s parent club Arsenal, winning 2-0 at the Emirates Stadium.

With Bellerin one of the most impressive young right-backs in the Premier League, it appears that Jenkinson may well have to leave the Gunners permanently if he is to find regular first-team football.

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