West Ham midfielder explains why he left Arsenal when he was a kid

Mark Noble

West Ham United midfielder Mark Noble started his career at Arsenal’s academy.

Mark Noble has revealed to The Times why he left Arsenal’s academy and signed for West Ham United when he was a kid.

“We struggled as a family,” the Englishman midfielder told The Times. “I was in the Arsenal academy as a kid.

"Dad [Mark Sr] was a lagger, working on pipes, and he’d get back from work and we just couldn’t get from our house in east London to Highbury, the old astroturf [under the Clock End], and we were late all the time.

“It was getting embarrassing. Arsenal were really good with me, and were keen on me renewing, but my dad, out of pride, said: ‘No we can’t do this any more.’

"So I signed for West Ham. When my dad couldn’t take me here, I used to get three buses here every day from Canning Town.”

Things have worked out just fine for Noble, who has established himself as one of the best players for West Ham.

The 28-year-old midfielder is a consistent figure in the Hammers’ midfield and is having a good season.

The former England Under-21 international has scored three goals and created 38 chances in 28 Premier League appearances for West Ham so far this season.

Noble has a pass accuracy of 86% and a shot accuracy of 37%, and has won 14 headers, 20 dribbles and 52 tackles.

West Ham are fifth in the Premier League table at the moment with 49 points from 29 matches.

The London outfit are just two points behind Manchester City, who are currently fourth in the standings and occupy the final Champions League spot.

Slaven Bilic’s side will take on Manchester United away from home at Old Trafford in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup today.

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