Per Mertesacker believes he has no better role model at Arsenal than former Gunners captain Tony Adams.
The 26-year-old defender, who moved to Arsenal from German side Werder Bremen on transfer deadline day, could make his debut against Swansea on Saturday.
He told the club's website: "We didn't get many pictures on the television but Adams was a legend. He's a special one.
"I always looked to Arsenal and he was one of the great defenders when I was 10 or 12 years old."
Adams, who spent his entire 22-year playing career at Arsenal, led the Gunners to four league titles and two FA Cups, including the league and Cup Double twice, under manager Arsene Wenger.
And Mertesacker, who looks set to replace the injured Thomas Vermaelen at centre-back, added: "I like the players [like Adams] very much and I have enjoyed seeing them over the years.
"I hope I can improve my performances here and get better and better. I want to be useful for the team."
Wenger may also give debuts to his four other transfer deadline signings as the Gunners go in search of a first Premier League win of the season.
Arsenal suffered a humiliating 8-2 defeat by Manchester United prior to the international break but since then have signed South Korea striker Chu Young Park, Brazilian left-back Andre Santos and midfield duo Mikel Arteta and Yossi Benayoun.