Fabio Vieira is thrilled to be joining “one of the biggest clubs in the world” after completing his move from Porto to Arsenal.
The 22-year-old midfielder has signed a long-term contract with the Gunners, who will pay Porto a reported £30million (€35m) fee with a further £4.2m (€5m) in add-ons.
With Arsenal falling just two points short of their first top-four Premier League finish since the 2015-16 season last term, losing out to local rivals Tottenham after losing two of their final three games of the campaign, boss Mikel Arteta had targeted midfield reinforcements.
Vieira, who recorded more assists (14) than any other Porto player in the 2021-22 Primeira Liga campaign, is the man selected by Arsenal to provide extra creativity, and he says the Gunners’ rich history attracted him to North London.
“I’m thrilled, of course. This is an important step forward in my career,” he told the club’s website. “Arsenal is a huge and historic club, so I’m delighted to be here at my new home.
“Arsenal is a historic English club. It’s one of the biggest clubs in the world. Everyone knows that Arsenal are a fantastic team.
“That was one of the main factors behind me choosing Arsenal. I really like the way the team plays, and I can’t wait to get started.
“I know some very famous players have played here. Some big stars, global legends of the game, such as [Dennis] Bergkamp, Thierry Henry, [Santi] Cazorla and [Cesc] Fabregas. I remember them well. They were players who had so much presence on the pitch.
“I feel it’s the right move in my career. I think it’ll be really good for me, and I have no regrets about it. I’m thrilled to be here.”
14 – New Arsenal signing Fábio Vieira made 14 assists for FC Porto in the Primeira Liga last season; the most of any player aged 21 or under across the top six European leagues. Invention. pic.twitter.com/tUTnQwi5CS
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 21, 2022
Arsenal scored at least eight goals fewer than each of the four Premier League sides to achieve Champions League qualification last term, and the addition of Vieira – who scored six league goals and ranked joint-fifth among Porto players for chances created (34) last season, will provide Arteta will another creative fulcrum.
Vieira says his strengths are in the final third of the pitch, as he compared his style to that of current Arsenal midfielder Martin Odegaard.
“I’m an attacking player who looks to find space between the lines to be able to finish off moves either with assists or by scoring goals,” he added. “I think those are the main attributes that Arsenal fans can expect from me. I’ll always give my all for the team.
“My strengths are my passing and shooting ability. I think those are my main strengths. As for what I need to work on, I’d say the physical side of my game.
“Arsenal have top players and I’m now here to help the team reach its goals. I’m a fan of Bukayo Saka and [Emile] Smith Rowe, I really like the way they play. Odegaard is quite similar to me.”
Vieira could make his Arsenal debut when the Gunners play the first fixture of the 2022-23 Premier League season on August 5, away at Crystal Palace.
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