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Crystal Palace (A) Sat 31 Jan 2015, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

Arteta: The Right Time

@Everton

Mikel Arteta has admitted it was the ‘right time' for him to leave Everton and join Arsenal.

The 29-year-old completed the £10 million move to the Emirates just minutes before Wednesday's transfer deadline after six-and-half years at the Club.

Rumours had been rife since the departure of fellow countryman Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona that Gunners boss Arsene Wenger had Arteta in his sights.

The situation developed late on Wednesday when, after a meeting between Blues boss David Moyes and the Spaniard, it became clear that Arteta saw his future away from Goodison Park.

Ahead of his departure, he told evertontv in his final interview:  "It is a big opportunity for me and my family and I think it is the right time for me to take it.

"It is a big challenge, a different challenge, fresh for me and I want to see myself on the biggest stage, the Champions League.

"I am 29-years-old so I haven't got much time left to take a chance like this one. I think I have done my best for Everton.

"I always try hard, I have been as professional as I could and I was grateful for the support and the love that the Club and the fans showed me."

Arteta joined Arsenal on a four year contract amid a frenzied day of transfer activity in the Premier League and particularly on the blue half of Merseyside and the red side of North London.

He is now set to join up with his new team-mates ahead of Arsenal's next Premier League clash with Swansea in 10-days' time and admitted he was bringing the curtain down on the highlight of his career.

He added: "It is very difficult to say goodbye. I still can't believe it but at the same time I think it is the right moment for everyone.

"That is the way football is, there is always a start and an end and today is the end of probably the best time of my career. I am never going to forget it.

"It has been crazy. It has been a crazy day. I can't believe what happened, and the way it happened but as I said, that is part of football and I am going to be playing for another club soon.

"Obviously I am never going to forget what I have done here and what the people and this club have done for me."

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