French teenager Matteo Guendouzi has joined Arsenal from Lorient to become new manager Unai Emery’s fifth signing of the summer.
Midfielder Guendouzi, 19, follows in the footsteps of Uruguay international Lucas Torreira, who was unveiled on Tuesday, as well as full-back Stephan Lichtsteiner, goalkeeper Bernd Leno and centre-back Sokratis Papastathopoulos in signing for the Gunners.
“We are delighted Matteo is joining us,” Emery said. “He is a talented young player and a lot of clubs were interested in him.
“He has big potential and gained good first-team experience last season with Lorient.
Welcome to Arsenal, @MatteoGuendouzi 👊#GunnerGuendouzi https://t.co/N02Ue3jSyu
“He wants to learn and improve and will be an important part of our first-team squad.”
Guendouzi started at Paris St Germain before moving to the Lorient academy in 2014.
He made his debut for the Ligue 2 side two years later, making 30 appearances, and has represented France at under-18, under-19 and under-20 level.
Guendouzi, who will wear the number 29 shirt, has targeted silverware with his new club.
Introducing… @MatteoGuendouzi 👋#GunnerGuendouzi 🔴 pic.twitter.com/dHEWi69hIK
“Arsenal have always been the team closest to my heart and a side I’ve wanted to join since I was a child,” he said.
“It gives me great pride – it’s incredible – and I hope I can do great things here.
“It doesn’t get any better than coming to a club like this, with so much history, like Arsenal. I’m hugely proud.”
He added: “My hope is to become a top player here at Arsenal. A lot of great players have played here. I want to become part of the club’s history and to achieve great things.
Matteo Guendouzi. Gunner.#GunnerGuendouzi 🔴 pic.twitter.com/FP7cY3d9Yi
“I want to win titles, titles, titles. Winning silverware, as I said, is very important to me and winning things here at Arsenal would be incredible.”
As well as bringing in five new signings, Arsenal also extended the contracts of Calum Chambers, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Granit Xhaka in recent weeks, while Mohamed Elneny has also agreed to fresh terms since Arsene Wenger stepped aside at the end of last season.
Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere, who this week joined West Ham, were both released.
You can get your @MatteoGuendouzi shirt right here
👉 https://t.co/QNn6BGLm2L pic.twitter.com/GJ0ydQ37ji
Emery will take charge of his first game since replacing Wenger when an Arsenal XI faces Boreham Wood in a pre-season friendly on Saturday.