Arsenal have finally completed the signing of young winger Marquinhos from Sao Paulo with technical director Edu confirming that his compatriot will be involved in pre-season this summer.
The Gunners have had a deal in place to sign the 19-year-old – whose full name is Marcus Vinicius Oliveira Alencar – for several weeks, though had faced a legal challenge from fellow Premier League side Wolves.
It was claimed that Marquinhos – who was due to be out of contract at the end of the month – had already penned a pre-contract agreement to move to Molineux, but that confusion has now been cleared up and Arsenal have secured their first summer signing.
The teenager moves to the Emirates in a deal worth around £3million, with the Gunners having negotiated a fee directly with Sao Paulo, and has signed a ‘long-term’ contract.
Although Edu has made it clear that Marquinhos is very much a signing for the future, the youngster will be given an opportunity to settle into life in north London and try to impress Mikel Arteta during pre-season.
‘We’re delighted to have completed the transfer with Sao Paulo, as Marquinhos was a player we had been watching for a while,’ Edu told the club’s official website.
‘At 19, he is still very young, so he is a player for the future.
‘We look forward to Marquinhos now joining us for pre-season, making his new home, and continuing to grow and develop with us.’
The winger made 33 appearances for Sao Paulo’s first team last season and has represented Brazil up to Under-17 level.
Marquinhos will report for pre-season with his new team-mates at the end of the month and Arsenal fans could get a first taste of the new signing on July 16 against Everton in the club’s first pre-season friendly of the summer in Baltimore.
Arsenal have two more matches in the US shortly after that, against Orlando City and Chelsea, before flying back for the Emirates Cup at the end of July.
Marquinhos is unlikely to be the last signing Arsenal make this summer, with Arteta in the market for a new central striker, two central midfielders and new full-backs to provide cover and competition for Kieran Tierney and Takehiro Tomiyasu.