Arsenal are ready to sign creative midfielder Fabio Vieira from Porto, sources tell CBS Sports. The Gunners will pay an initial fee of $36.8m (€35m) for the 22-year-old talent, who had the fourth-most assists in the Portuguese league last season. Subject to certain clauses – relating to his appearances and his new team qualifying for the Champions League – that amount could rise to $42m for Vieira, who has also been linked with Tottenham and Manchester United. Arsenal have been quick to secure his services, and the youngster is due to undergo his medical in north London on Friday.
In 39 appearances for Porto this season (including 19 starts), Vieira has delivered 16 assists and scored seven goals, averaging 1.15 goals and assists per 90 minutes in the Primeira Liga. He has 21 caps with the Portugal Under-21s and has scored 13 times. He was voted Player of the Tournament at Euro 2021 Under-21.
According to data from Wyscout, Vieira ranked first in the Portuguese league last season in progressive passes per 90 minutes and total assists (13). His average of two chances created per 90 minutes was the fourth-best tally in the division. Five of Vieira’s assists were for Mehdi Taremi. He is also highly ranked in terms of pressure, a priority for Mikel Arteta in his attacking line. Last season, Vieira averaged the sixth-most counter-pressure digs and the fourth-most digs in the final third.
Typically deployed on the right flank or as an attacking midfielder by Porto coach Sergio Conceicao, Vieira has also played in more forward positions and has even been used as a full-back on both flanks. This versatility is very attractive to Arsenal manager Arteta, who is keen to add depth to his squad alongside strengthening the starting XI in midfield and in the forward position. Only 13 players recorded more than 1,200 Premier League minutes for the club last season, and with a Europa League season ahead of them, new bench options are needed at the Emirates Stadium.
Vieira will be Arsenal’s second signing this summer after Brazilian striker Marquinhos, who arrived from Sao Paulo earlier this month. Matt Turner and Auston Trusty will also arrive in the coming days after signing contracts in January.