Arsenal confirm Eduardo da Silva signing
It’s official – Eduardo da Silva is an Arsenal player. The Brazilian born Croatian has signed a four-year deal with the club after completing what is believed to be £7.5million transfer from Croatia Zagreb. Eduardo, who has been give the #9 shirt, gave his first interview as an Arsenal player and spoke of his joy at joining the club.
“Well for me it is a great honour. Not only for me but for any football player it is an honour to play for Arsenal. I was lucky it was me that they chose to sign. So I am ever so happy and I hope to fulfil their expectations.”
It is obvious he has great respect for the club and the fact that he believes he was fortunate to join Arsenal suggests he is a level-headed character. Additionally, Eduardo seems to be well aware of Arsenal’s style and believes that it will suit his game.
“Yes [their] style is my style. Arsenal play with the ball on the floor. It is all about passing the ball rather than playing long balls forward. That is why I should fit in well.”
Not just a goal poacher
That should reassure the doubters who believe he might become the next Filippo Inzaghi or Roy Makaay – a goal-hungry poacher with little or no input to the team’s build-up play. In saying that, it is obvious when Eduardo mentions his footballing idol that the Brazilian’s game will mostly be about scoring goals.
“[My footballing hero is] Romario. He is the guy I look up to. To me he is an idol. There was no other like him.”
I doubt whether there has ever been a player to join the club whose football hero is such and out-and-out goalscorer. I admitted in yesterday’s post that I do not personally know a lot about Arsenal’s new signing but when you add his comments to the ones made by Croatian manager Slaven Bilic you start to get a firm idea about what Eduardo can bring to an Arsenal side that struggled last season to find the goals their dominant performances deserved.
Inventive and incisive
This is a suggestion that is backed up by Eastern European football expert Jonathan Wilson. Wilson provided some interesting opinions on the Croatian’s strengths and weaknesses and gave some indication of how Eduardo will fit into the Arsenal setup.
“He has that inventiveness and incisiveness to turn a game. A criticism levelled at Arsenal in recent seasons is that they don’t make the most of their possession, they don’t score as many goals as they should. Eduardo can provide that cutting edge.”
You really can’t argue with that. If Eduardo can provide the cutting edge that Arsenal so desperately require than he has every chance to be a success in England. And whilst a number of the Croatian readers of this blog have suggested that the step-up from the Croatian League to the English Premier League may be too much for da Silva, Wilson suggests this will not be the case.
“Slaven Bilic mentioned him to me three years ago now. He said he had someone in the Under-21s who could slot into the Manchester United side without any problems, and Bilic is a very honest bloke, he would not say something like that unless he really meant it.”
Da Silva will work well with Adebayor
Perhaps the most interesting comment that Wilson made with regards to da Silva’s ability to integrate with the team is his suggestion that the Croatian is perfectly suited to Arsenal’s Togolese forward Emmanuel Adebayor.
“Eduardo is certainly not like Henry, who likes to drop deep and collect the ball. He sees his role as a scorer of goals. Some of the profiles I have read today have described Eduardo as a poacher and nothing more, but he has other qualities. He can hold the ball up, he is quite strong and compact, he can bring the ball down on his chest, he directs his headers well, he is intelligent and quick, not lightning fast but quick enough. I think he and Adebayor will work well together.”
It is obvious that Wilson really knows his stuff and in saying that – I’m getting more and more excited about the signing of Eduardo. If he can prove to be the natural goalscorer that Arsenal have been looking for then it will give the side every chance of achieving success next season.
Flexibility in attack
There are a number of Arsenal supporters who believe that Adebayor is not good enough to play for the club and that da Silva will slot into his position to partner Robin van Persie but it doesn’t seem this will be the case. When I spoke previously about the possibility of Carlos Tevez joining Arsenal I suggested that it would give Wenger the flexibility to select his front two on a game-by-game basis dependant on the opposition and which pairing he believes would produce results for the team. Whilst it was not Tevez but Eduardo who has joined Arsenal I still believe this will be the case.
On a final note I’d just like to say that I wish Eduardo all the best in his career at Arsenal. Although I was initially a little sceptical about his signing that the consistent positive feedback I have heard and read about Eduardo has made me genuinely excited to see him join the club. Hopefully there are one or two more signings still to come.
What do you think?
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