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Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Andre Santos finalises Arsenal move

ESPNsoccernet staff

Arsenal have confirmed the arrival of Brazil left-back Andre Santos from Fenerbahce for a fee thought to be in the region of 6 million.

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Santos, 28, will add valuable Champions League experience to a youthful Gunners squad and has been signed as a replacement for Gael Clichy, who joined Manchester City in July.

The former Corinthians defender, who has been capped 22 times for Brazil, said he was delighted to complete his switch to the Premier League, following in the footsteps of compatriots Eduardo, Sylvinho, Denilson and Gilberto Silva in signing for the Gunners.

"I am delighted to have signed for Arsenal," Santos said. "It was one of my dreams to play for a major European football club and I have accomplished this. I am very happy to be part of this team. All the Brazilians who came to this club spoke wonders about it and I am delighted to be part of the Arsenal family."

Arsene Wenger added: "Santos is a quality player, with the ability to both defend well and get forward and help with attacks. He has experience in the Champions League and for Brazil and has proven he can deliver at the highest level. We welcome Santos to the club and look forward to him having a big impact for us."

Santos, who will wear the No. 11 shirt for Arsenal, earlier insisted he did not quit Fenerbahce for the Gunners because of the controversy surrounding his former club's involvement in the Turkish match-fixing scandal.

Fenerbahce were removed from the Champions League last week and have asked to be relegated to Turkish football's second tier in the wake of the scandal. But Santos says he was not deserting a sinking ship by leaving Fenerbahce, insisting he loved playing for them.

"I am leaving Fenerbahce from front door," Santos told reporters at Istanbul airport on Wednesday. "I love the country, Istanbul and Turkish people. I can come back here at the latter stages of my career. I was happy at Fenerbahce but I did right thing for my career.

"The club had so many problems but I didn't left here because of these. I have never let someone down during my spell at Fenerbahce. I am grateful everyone in the club."

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