Date:23rd June 2022 at 6:00pm
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Arsenal have officially completed the signing of midfielder Fabio Vieira from Portuguese champions FC Porto in a €40m (£34.2m) deal.

Porto released a statement on 17 June stating to the stock market that the Gunners would pay an initial 35m (£29.9m) for the 22-year-old, with the rest in potential add-ons.

“I am very excited that we have identified and signed such a special talent,” said Gunners boss Mikel Arteta.

“Fabio is a very creative player that will bring high quality and versatility to our attacking play.”

Vieira has yet to win a senior cap for Portugal but was voted player of the tournament at last year’s European Under-21 Championship.

He scored six goals and provided a league-high 14 assists in 27 Primeira Liga outings last season as he helped Porto claim the top-flight title in Portugal.

“Fabio is a player with special qualities who is comfortable with the ball in the final third of the pitch,” added Arsenal technical director Edu.

“We are all looking forward to working with him and enjoying his future contribution to Arsenal.

“We will now continue to work hard and are looking forward to finishing this transfer window as strongly as possible.”

An attacking midfielder by trade, Vieira has been a part of the FC Porto academy since 2008. He rode his way through the ranks to receive his promotion to the first team in the summer of 2020 before eventually enjoying his professional breakthrough during the 2020/21 campaign.

While the 21-year-old only played a bit-part role for the Portuguese champions last season, he became a far more prominent figure in the first team after Luis Diaz’ departure to Liverpool.

Previously hailed him as a “rising star“, he already has 11 goals in 19 games for Portugal’s Under-21 side, with his manager there, Rui Jorge, hailing the Porto starlet as “a very technically advanced player’ with a ‘great future“.

With 27 league games under his belt this season, the Portuguese wizard astonishingly recorded six goals and delivered 14 assists, which is more contributions any other Porto player. He also ranked as Liga NOS’ third-best assist maker for the 2021/22 campaign.

Blessed with wonderful skill, technical excellence, a sumptuous left foot and the unique ability to operate consummately in the half-space and in between the lines, the Portuguese maestro could well offer much variation and flexibility to Arteta’s weaponry next term due to his versatility, capable of playing on the right-wing, at no.10, even as a false-nine or in an advanced central midfield role.

To further highlight how much of a dangerous attacking figure he is, no other player at Porto has managed to equal the number of crosses that Vieira (95) has made throughout this campaign. He was also listed in the top 10 for shots per 90 minutes in the Portuguese league last term, highlighting his courageousness in getting shots away.

His overall performances have earned him a season rating of 7.45 from SofaScore, making him the fifth-best ranked player in the Porto squad.

This all shows why the midfielder has been likened to Mesut Ozil by football talent scout Jacek Kulig on Twitter, who also said that the player has a “left foot made of gold.” He’s also been stylistically compared by journalist Sam Tighe to Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva, who also held the same measured attacking approach before he came to England.

This campaign has seen him register a whopping 14 big chances created, along with his 14 assists whilst also averaging 1.3 key passes per game showcasing his majestic abilities in the final third.

Taking into account how Arsenal have racked up the eight-best goal-creating actions (82) in the Premier League this season, possessing the qualities of the £13.5m-rated playmaker could certainly propel Arteta’s gameplan at the Emirates.

Such an incredible influence and abilities in the attack means the Gunners will be one of the most exciting teams to watch next season, especially because of the wonderful blend of attacking qualities in the Spaniard’s brilliantly constructed squad.

AND in other news, “Interest from Arsenal”: Journalist claims “spectacular” £48k-per-week star wants to leave…