Arsenal captain, Per Mertesacker has said he has no desire to continue playing for the club, as continuing to do so takes a toll on his body.

The 33-year-old German, who is expected to retire at the end of the season to became an academy coach, admitted he would finally be able to “live free”.

Mertesacker has made 13 appearances in just 33 games for the Gunners in the last two seasons and he is reportedly eager to call time on his footballing career.

Speaking to German medium, Der Spiegel, he said, “My body is finished.

“Everyone says I should enjoy the last year, to play as much as possible and take everything in.

“I would rather sit on the bench or – even better – in the stands, and then, for the first time in my life, aged more than 30, I will feel free.

“Some days you realise that everything is a burden, both physically and mentally, but you have to deliver without a doubt, even if you are injured.

“In the moments before a game starts, my stomach turns around as if I had to vomit. Then I have to choke so violently until my eyes water.

“Even if I had to vomit before every game and go to rehab 20 times, I would do it all over again.

“It was worth it for all of the memories.”

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