Bacary Sagna signs for Arsenal
Arsenal have completed the signing of 24-year-old French full-back Bacary Sagna from Auxerre on a long-term contract. Reports suggest the transfer to be worth around £6million but at this stage – as is the norm for Arsenal signings – the fee has not been disclosed. What is confirmed is that Sagna will wear the #3 shirt vacated by Ashley Cole and you can read a profile on the man here.
Sagna is the fourth official signing to be made by the club following the arrivals of Polish goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski, young Norwegian defender Harvard Nordtveit and Croatian striker Eduardo da Silva. Sanga has been linked with Arsenal for some time now and is unsurprisingly thrilled to join the club.
“It’s amazing. If someone had told me that one day I would be an Arsenal player I would not have believed him. I am very happy for my family, my friends and also for my future. It is really a positive move.”
For those that aren’t aware, Sagna was voted into the French Ligue 1 Team of the Season in his favoured position at right-back, a position he will surely compete for at Arsenal with the likes of Emmanuel Eboue and Justin Hoyte. However, there has been some suggestion that Sagna has been signed as a utility defender (much like William Gallas) who will be able to operate anywhere across the back four. Upon signing the Frenchman, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger supported this suggestion by saying:
“He plays mainly at right back, but can also play along the defence or in midfield. He is strong, quick and enjoys defending but also has a good offensive side to his game. He has a fighting spirit and will be a very good addition to our squad.”
Interesting comments, to say the least. I am still baffled as to how a defender who is only 1.76m tall could play as a central defender, but stranger things have happened. There has also been the suggestion that Sagna may be deployed as a right-sided midfielder or play at right back and push Eboue onto the wing, an area that is in desperate need of improvement.
Sagna will not need time to adapt to English football
I see a lot of similarities between this signing and the one involving Eduardo. Both players are relatively unknown outside their respective countries, both are in their mid-twenties and it is still uncertain how both will fit into the structure of the team. Interestingly, Sagna believes he will not need long to adapt to the pace of the Premiership.
“I don’t know why I will have problems adapting in England. It is quite a French-speaking club, everybody has put me at ease right from the start and I feel good.”
Sagna raises an interesting point with regards to the French-speaking culture at Arsenal. Indeed, apart from goalkeeper Jens Lehmann and Hoyte, the entire Arsenal defence speaks French. Hopefully this will ensure that communication is at a high and some of the defensive errors the team made last season will be avoided.
He sounds like an intelligent young man and a player that will no doubt improve the current Arsenal squad. I see a lot of similarities between him and Manchester United left-back Patrice Evra so if he can prove as effective as the ex-Monaco player then he will do well at the club. Like the other three signings made by Arsenal so far this summer, Sagna is not a big name but will surely prove to be a quality signing. He seems to have a good attitude and is looking forward to a successful first season and promising long-term career at the club.
“We have the youth card and the fact that no one really rates us means that maybe we can surprise people. The young players want to prove what they can do and I want to prove what I can do. And all of this together will help us have a good season, I hope.”
I hope so too. What do you think?
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