The defender – on loan from Flamengo – made his Premier League debut on Saturday during the 1-0 win against West Ham.

Pablo Mari has set his sights on playing for Arsenal for ‘a lot of years’ after making his Premier League debut against West Ham.

The Spanish defender joined on loan from Brazilian giants Flamengo in January and the Gunners have a choice to make his move permanent at the end of the season.

Mari has had to bide his time since arriving in north London, with his fitness not originally in the level for him to be in contention for matchday squads.

But he made his first appearance during the FA Cup win at Portsmouth last week and after that, with Shkodran Mustafi hurt, he was handed his first start in the Premier League at the weekend, helping Arsenal to a 1-0 victory against West Ham.

Although he had been given some issues by Michail Antonio, on the whole it was an impressive first league appearance from the 26-year-old and he’s already targeting plenty more looks in the white and red.

“I wish to play one of the best leagues in the world and I am here,” said Mari. “I will do my best for the group, for your club, to acquire a good deal of games and for lovers [so they can] enjoy [it] with me.

“I wish to play plenty of years here with Arsenal. I am quite happy now.”

When requested on whether that meant he wanted to make his move to Emirates Stadium permanent, Mari added: “Yeah, of course. I am quite happy here.

“I will attempt to do my best until the end of the season. I hope also that the club is happy with me and then we’re going to locate a fantastic end for everyone.”

Saturday’s win against West Ham was a third consecutive victory in the Premier League for Arsenal and they now visit Manchester City on Wednesday night with a chance to move to within 2 points of fifth-placed Manchester United.

For Mari, it’ll be a return to a club where he spent three years as a participant between 2016 and 2019 before he transferred into Brazil to combine Flamengo.

He didn’t make a single look for City, but during his time in the club – rather having three different spells out on loan with Girona, NAC and Deportivo La Coruna.

And before his return to the Etihad, Mari admits he looks back on his time as a City player for a bit of a missed opportunity.

“Maybe,” he said. “At that moment, for me personally in my head, I wanted to play together.

“This wasn’t possible. So now for me, it’s another circumstance.

“I have learned a lot [since leaving] because when I was there I was young, now I’m a little bit older. I learned a lot in all of the groups I’ve played. So I don’t need to appear back, I wish to appear forward.

“Today I am in a great club and I would like to continue here for many years.”