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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain "sad" at departure of midfielder


Arsenal midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain admits it was sad to see Abou Diaby leave the club.

The Frenchman left the Gunners after boss Arsene Wenger decided not to extend his contract, putting an end to the 29-year-old's nine-year stay at the Emirates.

Oxlade-Chamberlain describes Diaby as one of the best players he ever played alongside with, wishing him luck ahead of next season.

"Abou's a massive talent," Oxlade-Chamberlain told

"He's one of the best midfielders I've seen or even played with and, for a man of his stature and to be able to do some of the things he did with the ball, it was amazing to see at times.

"Unfortunately he had a really tough time with injuries and you've got to feel for him because he worked so hard.

"I'm sure a lot of players would have given up a long time before he has. He still hasn't and he's still working hard to get fit.

"A lot of players wouldn't have been able to cope with the mental side and the disappointment of the injuries, so it just shows you what a professional he is and how much of a tough mentality he has.

"He's a big character in our dressing room. Everyone respected him and his footballing ability that much that he was always part of the team at all times.

"It's sad to see him go but I had a chat with him yesterday and the reasons why he wanted to leave and get himself right made complete sense to me.

"You've got to wish him all the the luck with that and I hope that he can get back to his best and push on with whatever he does.

"He is one of the best players I've played with, you've just got to hope that he can stay fit."

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Abou Diaby, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain