Arsenal signed Tomiyasu from Italian outfit Bologna last summer and he wasted little time in cementing his place in Mikel Arteta’s starting eleven.


The defender has settled in nicely in his first season in England and Yoshida confirmed that he held several conversations with Tomiyasu over the possibility of moving to the Premier League.



However, Yoshida conceded that he has been left surprised by the way the Arsenal defender has adapted to the Premier League so rapidly.


The former Premier League star admitted that he expected him to struggle in his first season in England as the pace and intensity of the game is a far cry from what he experienced in Italy.



“We spoke about England a lot”, Yoshida told The Athletic.


“Not just once or twice — probably in every national team meeting. We spoke about the possibility for Tomiyasu to go to the next level. At that time, he was just 20 or 21. He wanted to go to a bigger club.”



“But I’m still very surprised at how quickly he’s adapted to Arsenal, especially at right-back.


“I thought that in the first season he would struggle, but instead he’s doing very well.


“He will be having to make much quicker decisions.


“The tempo is much higher than in Italy, the intensity is higher, and the refereeing is totally different.


“In Italy, there is more pausing, more rest — in England, there is a ‘play on’ attitude.


“Physically you have to be very fit, and mentally you have to be ready.”


Tomiyasu has been dealing with a calf injury but returned to the matchday squad in Arsenal’s win over Brentford last weekend.