Arsenal chief Edu explains reasoning behind Thomas Partey, Gabriel Magalhaes and Willian signings

Edu is the man in charge of transfers at the Emirates
Edu is the man in charge of transfers at the Emirates (Picture: Arsenal)

Arsenal technical director Edu says the club added ‘quality’, ‘physicality’ and mental fortitude to their squad this summer with the signings of Thomas Partey, Gabriel and Willian.

In a big show of faith to boss Mikel Arteta, top target Partey was recruited from Atletico Madrid as the north London club activated his £45 million release clause on deadline day.

The Gunners also recruited centre-back Gabriel and experienced winger Willian, as well as re-securing the services of Dani Ceballos on another season-long loan from Real Madrid.

Edu praises the physical and mental attributes of the new additions, who he says are hungry to lead the north London club to glory.

‘I think we improved the squad’s quality and physicality,’ Edu told the club’s official website.

‘Thomas, who we had in our plan for the future, when me and Mikel sit and talked, I think you get all the players who we really focused on. If you see Willian, he brings us experience and a very special physicality in terms of speed. If you see Gabriel, he gives us a lot of physicality and presence. Dani, quality.

‘Thomas, physicality, quality and mentally he is very strong. But in the end if you see all these players we brought to the club, they are very good here (points to legs), but they are better here (points to head) which for me is very important because when you talk to the players, they have a lot of ambition, they are excited and they are hungry to win a title again.

‘This, for me, is important to have in the players to not only be good here (points to legs), but good here (points to head). And they are.’

As well as new signings, Arsenal crucially negotiated new contracts for top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and youngsters Bukayo Saka and Martinelli.

‘This is another good point I want to mention because normally people are talking about signing players but for me and Mikel, we dedicate our time to what we have at home,’ the Brazilian added.

‘So we have to renew players, we have to give our respect to the players we have here, so let’s do it as soon as possible. If you see, Martinelli was the first one we did even before the window, Bukayo was during the window and Auba was in the window as well.

‘Those three, in my plan, was to try to get them done before the window even opened but of course there are negotiations, there are talks, there are meetings but we did it and it’s an important point as well.’

MORE: Arsenal set to re-attempt efforts to terminate Mesut Ozil’s contract early ahead of January transfer window

MORE: Gareth Southgate heaps praise on Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka ahead of England vs Wales

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