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Arsenal Confirm Gervinho Signing

11/7/2011
Premier League side Arsenal’s protracted move for Ivory Coast and Lille striker Gervinho has finally come to fruition after the 24-year-old was officially announced as a new recruit ahead of their pre-season tour of the far East.

The 24-year-old scored 15 goals for the French champions last season as he helped Lille to a league and cup double, prompting Arsene Wenger to move for the forward as he seeks to strengthen his team after six seasons without a trophy.

Gervinho, who captained Ivory Coast at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, passed a medical last Thursday but was allowed to go home to spend time with his family and will not feature in Arsenal’s pre-season tour as he is yet to have a Gunners training session.

“I chose Arsenal because it’s a young group within which I will be able to integrate easily,” Gervinho told France Football magazine. “I had no hesitation. None. But in a transfer there is always a period of analysis and negotiations. All sides had to be satisfied so that things could develop smoothly – I am going there to play.”

Though the amount Wenger paid for Gervinho has not been disclosed by Arsenal, it is known that he beat off competition from Paris Saint Germain for the player, with Lille general manager Frederic Paquet thought to be unwilling to strengthen a competitor.

However, Paquet has warned that despite Gervinho’s transfer, Lille will not be releasing 20-year-old Belgian wonder-kid Eden Hazard – reportedly also an Arsenal target – describing the sought-after player as “untransferable”.
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