Former Arsenal defender Gabriel Paulista has hit out at his old club for failing to give him enough chances during his time in England.
Gabriel joined the Gunners in 2015 from Spanish side Villarreal. He made 64 appearances for the club, scoring one goal, in two and a half seasons in north London. He also won two FA Cups during his time at the club, in 2015 and 2017.
The Brazilian left Arsenal in the summer to return to Spain with Valencia for a fee of around £10m. He has made a good start at his new club, featuring 11 times so far, and has yet to be involved in a match that they have lost. Valencia sit second in the league, four points behind leader Barcelona.
Now the ex-Gunner has come out and criticised his old club for not giving him enough opportunities at the club, in what was a 'dream' move to the Premier League. He also feels he was made a scapegoat for bad results. Speaking to Sky Sports, the 26-year-old said" "I deserved more of an opportunity. Sometimes I played because my teammates were injured.
"I did play and sometimes even after playing well, I'd go home sad, given that I was only playing because my teammate was injured. I don't think I deserved that. I think I had the ability to play and to start games because I deserved to do so, or because I did well in training, but that didn't happen.
"Sometimes I'd play three or four games and if Arsenal lost, I'd be dropped and everyone on the outside would say, 'It's Gabriel's fault'.
"That wasn't good for me. People thought, 'When that guy plays, Arsenal always lose'. When [Hector] Bellerin got injured, I played at right-back and Arsenal started to lose. I think I played in four or five games en route to the FA Cup semi-final against Manchester City and I played brilliantly in that game.
"I played really well and I received plenty of praise. Then I think we faced Tottenham away and lost, I gave away a penalty in that game and lost my place in the team. I didn't play again.
"I played in the last Premier League game because everyone was injured, all the centre-backs were out... I was quite down about how it went because of these reasons and it didn't sit well with me."
Gabriel and Valencia have a big match this weekend as they host league leaders Barcelona. A victory would put them just a point behind top spot in La Liga.