Arsenal midfielder Santi Cazorla says Arsenal will next season be free of the pressure that built up over a nine-year trophyless spell.
The Gunners came back from 2-0 down to beat Hull City in the FA Cup final in May to end the barren spell and Cazorla believes that sets them up well for next season.
The Spaniard has admitted the squad became heavily burdened during the drought but insists victory at Wembley has ‘liberated’ them.
“I think it has changed the pressure on us heading into the new season,” Cazorla told Marca.
“It liberated us in a certain way. The team, after so many years without winning anything, were aware of the tension at important times.”
The signing of Alexis Sanchez has also lifted spirits around Emirates Stadium and Cazorla expects his arrival to spark a scramble to impress Arsene Wenger.
He added: “I hope I can bring many things, although it will be difficult to get in the side!”
“There are so many players and all at a great level: [Mesut] Ozil, [Aaron] Ramsey, [Jack] Wilshere, [Theo] Walcott, and now Alexis too. In any case, it’s important that the group is competitive.
That will mean we all raise our game.”