Mikel Arteta has labelled Oleksandr Zinchenko “an exceptional footballer” with the Manchester City player set to move to Arsenal.
Video footage has surfaced on social media of the player at the Gunners’ pre-season training camp in Florida, USA, ahead of completing a £32m transfer to the north London club.
Speaking after Arsenal’s 3-1 win over Major League Soccer side Orlando City on Wednesday night, the Spaniard said he is looking forward to reuniting with the player who he worked with at City.
“As you’ve seen he is here,” Arteta told reporters.
“There are still a few formalities to get everything completed but we’re really happy to have him.
“I know the player really well, he’s an exceptional footballer and he is someone that is going to bring as well another competitive edge to that dressing room.”
Arteta has pointed to Zinchenko’s versatility as one of the key reasons why he believes he will help his team this season.
When asked whether the Ukraine international will play as a left-back or midfielder for Arsenal, Arteta replied: “Both, he can play in both.
“He was a natural No. 10 early in his career and we converted him into a left back, which can do a lot of things that we want in our way of playing.
“That versatility is something that is going to be important for the team because we have players in that position who are more specific full backs so I’m really happy.”
Zinchenko is set to become Arsenal’s fifth signing of the summer, while Alexandre Lacazette the club’s only high-profile departure this transfer window.
Arteta does not rule out making more signings in the coming weeks but expects more players to leave the club before the September 1 deadline.
“I don’t know,” he said. “It’s what we have today.
“We have a large squad so we have to make some decisions as well on the players that we’re not going to be using consistently and be fair and straight with them and that’s a process that is going to start very soon as well.
“We have to [let players go]. We have a big squad and now we have to make things happen.”