Arshavin aims to beat emotional, physical strain of Arsenal move

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Andrei Arshavin said on Monday that he hoped he would be physically and mentally fit for Russia's upcoming 2010 World Cup qualifiers.
MOSCOW, March 23 (RIA Novosti) - Andrei Arshavin said on Monday that he hoped he would be physically and mentally fit for Russia's upcoming 2010 World Cup qualifiers.

Russia are four points behind leaders Germany in Group 4 with a game in hand. They face Azerbaijan in Moscow on March 28 and Lichtenstein away from home on April 1.

Arsenal star Arshavin suffered a foot injury in a game against Blackburn Rovers just over a week ago. However, he played that game to the end, and also played over 160 minutes in Arsenal's next two matches.

"When you go out onto the pitch, you always run the risk of getting an injury, and I am currently experiencing a problem with my foot. I hope however that this won't hinder me in the matches for the national team," he said at a news conference in Moscow on Monday.

The 27-year-old forward also said that he was hoping the recent emotional stress of his drawn-out move to Arsenal would not affect his performance in the games.

Arshavin finally signed for Arsenal at the beginning of February after over half a year of speculation, rumors and negotiations that the Russian media dubbed the "Arshavin soap opera."

"The last few months have been extremely emotional, and I still haven't completely got over it. I hope this won't affect my performance for the national side," he said.

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