Premier League leaders Arsenal have completed the deadline day signing of Jorginho from London rivals Chelsea for a reported £12m on an 18-month contract with the option of a further year.
Arsenal were repeatedly linked with signing a midfielder in the build-up to deadline day, with Brighton’s Moises Caicedo the name most prominently linked.
However, Arsenal eventually gave up on that deal due to Brighton’s reluctance to sell.
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The Gunners instead shifted their attention to Jorginho, who was allowed to leave by Chelsea ahead of his contract expiring in the summer and due to their pursuit of Enzo Fernandez from Benfica.
Jorginho, 31, joined Chelsea in 2018 and was part of the team that won both the Champions League in 2021 and Europa League in 2019.
He also was a key cog in the Italy team that triumphed at Euro 2020.
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta told the club’s official website: “Jorginho is a midfield player with intelligence, deep leadership skills and a huge amount of Premier League and international experience. Jorginho has won in his career, but he still has the hunger and huge willingness to contribute here.
“We are so pleased to sign Jorginho and welcome him and his family to the club.”
Italy international Jorginho says Arteta was one of the main reasons why he chose to join the Premier League leaders.
“He was a big influence,” he said. “I know that he tried a few times to get me before and it didn’t happen due to other reasons, not because of my wishes. So of course, he had a big influence.
“I’m very excited for this new challenge, and I just can’t wait to be on the pitch to be honest! Everything has happened so fast. I was a bit surprised, but I took the opportunity of this amazing challenge.
“It’s an important shirt. It’s an amazing club, a big one, and I’m really excited and happy to be here.”
Sporting director Edu said: “Jorginho is an established professional with a strong mentality who brings quality and experience into our squad.
“He is a player who fits our style of play, and he joins us at a very good moment where he can contribute in a key position to help maintain our momentum. We welcome Jorginho to Arsenal.”
Chelsea said in a club statement: “A friendly and funny guy off the pitch, Jorginho leaves Chelsea with 213 appearances to his name and four winners’ medals, none more precious than the 2021 Champions League success in which he played a major part. Good luck in the future, Jorgi!”
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