EPL

Arsenal-bound Vieira 'dream for any manager', says former Porto coach

By Sports Desk June 21, 2022

Arsenal have secured a "dream for any manager" in agreeing a deal with Porto for Fabio Vieira.

That is the message from former Porto youth coach Manuel Tulipa, who was speaking to BBC Sport after the Primeira Liga side confirmed that terms for the transfer had been agreed.

Mikel Arteta's side will pay £30million (€35m) up front with £4.2m (€5m) in add-ons, with the move subject to Vieira agreeing personal terms with the Premier League side.

Arsenal will add another creative outlet to their ranks, which already boasts Martin Odegaard, Bukayo Saka, Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny, Granit Xhaka and Emile Smith Rowe.

Vieira provided the most assists (14) among Porto players in the 2021-22 Primeira Liga campaign and scored six league goals.

The 22-year-old also ranked joint-fifth for chances created (34), while playing 27 times, and Tulipa hailed the transfer as a good deal for all parties.

"Players like Fabio are worth a lot of money, so if you can grab them before they fully break out, why not? That's smart business," he said.

"He's that kind of creative midfielder who comes with the solution when you're struggling during a game. He can see what's going on around him and anticipate what will happen.

"That's the dream for any manager and the sort of footballer that clubs are always after.

"He has all the tools – he can dribble, combine, slow down the tempo, break into the box, score. Players like this have to be close to goal.

"One thing he needed to improve, however, were his actions without the ball, but he did so over the past months.

"He has grown into a more collective athlete under [Porto coach Sergio] Conceicao and found the right balance between the different moments of the game."

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