Arsenal transfer news: Gunners announce signing of Saint Etienne’s William Saliba

The 18-year-old defender is set to immediately return to the Ligue 1 club on loan for the 2019/20 campaign.

Samuel Lovett
Thursday 25 July 2019 18:04
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Arsenal have announced the signing of Saint-Etienne’s William Saliba on a long-term contract.

As expected, the 18-year-old defender will remain with the Ligue 1 club on a season-long loan before linking up with the Gunners next summer.

“We’re delighted William is joining us,” said manager Unai Emery. “Many teams wanted him but he decided he wanted to come to us and be part of our future. He will stay in France next season for more experience and then we look forward to him joining our group.”

Saliba is Arsenal’s second signing of the day after Real Madrid‘s Dani Ceballos put pen to paper on a loan move to the Emirates.

Other options – including from rival Premier League clubs – are believed to have been on the table but Ceballos, who has six senior caps and also helped Spain’s Under-21s to Euro 2019 success this summer, insists the lure of playing for Emery made up his mind.

“The coach was the turning point in terms of me joining this massive club,” he told the club’s official website.

“He’s a Spanish coach and he knows me from my time at other clubs. I’m really happy to be able to help Arsenal achieve our objectives.

“I knew I had the confidence of the coach, which was very important for me from the start.”

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