Arsenal have confirmed the signing of Gabriel Jesus in a £45million deal from Manchester City, with the Brazilian putting pen to paper on a five-year contract with the Gunners.
The 25-year-old has been Mikel Arteta’s top transfer target this summer, with the Spanish coach eager to add more firepower to a squad that lost Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette in the last six months.
Tottenham and Chelsea had also been interested in the forward – who only had one year left on his contract – but Arsenal managed to convince him to move to the Emirates despite the absence of Champions League football.
Jesus first arrived at the club’s London Colney training ground last Tuesday to undergo a medical and finalise personal terms, sharing a warm embrace with compatriot and technical director Edu.
Two days later, on Thursday, Jesus was pictured at the Emirates filming his unveiling video and now, nearly a week after he first arrived in London, Arsenal have finally confirmed the deal.
Arteta is believed to have played a key role in persuading Jesus to join, having struck up a good relationship with the forward during his three years working as Pep Guardiola’s assistant at City.
The chance to play regularly in his preferred position through the middle was also a big factor in Jesus’ decision, having often lined up on the right wing for the Premier League champions last season.
‘I’m very excited. The club has done a tremendous job to recruit a player of this stature,’ said Arteta.
‘I know Gabriel personally very well, and we all know him well from his time in the Premier League and being really successful here.
‘This is a position that’s been on our radar for a long time now and we have managed to get a player that we all wanted, so I’m really happy.’
Arsenal’s technical director Edu said: ‘We are delighted that we have secured the transfer of Gabriel. Everyone who knows football well, knows the qualities of Gabriel Jesus.
‘Gabriel is a player who we have admired for a long time now. He is 25 years old and an established Brazil international who has consistently demonstrated that he is a player at a very high level. We look forward to seeing him join up with his new teammates ahead of the new season. We all welcome Gabriel to Arsenal.’
Jesus becomes Arsenal’s fourth signing of the summer after the arrivals of Brazilian winger Marquinhos, American goalkeeper Matt Turner and Porto playmaker Fabio Vieira.
Arteta had also been pursuing a deal for Leeds star Raphinha but Chelsea and Barcelona are now the frontrunners for his signature, while the Gunners also face stiff competition from Manchester United to land Lisandro Martinez.