Emmanuel Adebayor is "100% an Arsenal footballer" and has vowed to repay the club by firing them to glory in 2010 - but accepts the young Gunners failed to move forwards this season.
Following their Champions League lesson at the hands of holders Manchester United, whose early double salvo at Emirates Stadium effectively killed off the semi-final tie inside 11 minutes, Arsene Wenger's men now have little other than pride left to play for as a campaign which had promised so much again failed to deliver.
Adebayor is one of several of Arsenal's key players who could not produce a big performance when it really mattered, the Gunners also seeing their FA Cup hopes extinguished at the semi-final stage with defeat to Chelsea at Wembley.
Nevertheless, the 6ft 3in Togo frontman - who last summer agreed a lucrative new deal to stay following interest from AC Milan - firmly believes both he and the club have a bright future together, but must look to learn the lessons of another frustrating end to the season.
"I think we have taken a step backwards - not only me, but the team," declared the 25-year-old, who smashed 30 goals last season. "We need some players. We had [Alex] Hleb gone to Barcelona, [Mathieu] Flamini gone to Milan.
"At the beginning of the season it was quite difficult, but we have showed we have passed that moment. The team are quite young and we have tried to make the best of everything.
"Now we have to fight for what are we going to achieve next season."
Adebayor - signed from Monaco during January 2006 - has once again been linked with a summer move away from Arsenal to Milan. However, the Togo frontman insists nothing is further from his mind.
Adebayor declared: "Arsenal put me where I am today - they made me one of the biggest strikers in the world. I have to pay them back.
"How am I going to pay them back? Make them win trophies. That is what I am here for and I have to fight for that. Next season, 100%, I am an Arsenal footballer.
"Before signing for Arsenal, people were telling me I have the chance to win things here. Now I am empty-handed - but I do not have any reason for leaving until I get the trophies that I came here for."
Adebayor has had his fare share of critics this season, with some sections of the Arsenal crowd frustrated at a perceived lack of commitment to the Gunners cause.
However, the African - who has 16 goals from 36 appearances - insists he remains fully motivated.
"I will do everything that it will take to come back next season and show how good I am - show character, show more personality, show desire for this club," Adebayor declared.
"I have been doing my best, giving 100% in every single game. Do not forget last season I played without injury and this time I got three injuries. That makes it quite difficult."
Adebayor maintains all is not lost for Wenger's young squad, which next season will have January signing Andrey Arshavin eligible for the Champions League.
"We are learning things and just want to achieve," he said. "We just have to believe and keep going. We are very disappointed for the fans for the way they believed we can do it. We are very sorry for that and it is very important for the next season that we are here to play and bring glory to this club.
"As soon as we have the chance to win the first trophy, many will follow."
Arsenal are secure in fourth place in the Barclays Premier League following a 21-match unbeaten run and host Chelsea, whom they trail by six points with three matches left, on Sunday.
Adebayor said: "This season was a little bit difficult for everyone, so now we just have to play for our dignity, show character and hopefully come back."
Gunners captain Cesc Fabregas accepts Arsenal having another campaign bereft of silverware is just not good enough.
He said: "We have gone 21 consecutive games without being beaten [in the Premier League] and that shows from the beginning to the end we have improved a lot - but when you play in these sort of competitions you have to be at your best and we have not been at our best.
"Fourth spot for Arsenal, I do not think is good enough. We have not been at the level that everyone expected for Arsenal Football Club, that is for sure."
The Spain Euro 2008 winner added: "We have to try to finish the season as well as we can and be ready for next summer because as we have seen this year the start of the season is really important."