Mikel Arteta speaks out as Arsenal sign David Raya on permanent transfer

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta (Picture: Getty)

Mikel Arteta says he is ‘delighted’ that ‘important player’ David Raya has completed a permanent move to Arsenal.

Raya spent last season on loan at Arsenal and helped the Gunners challenge for the Premier League title by claiming the Golden Glove award for the most clean sheets.

The Spaniard’s temporary move from Brentford to north London included an option to sign the goalkeeper permanently for £27m.

‘David showed us last season what an important player he is for us, so we are delighted he is now officially our player,’ Arteta said.

‘He is a big presence in our dressing room and we are really pleased to keep working with him.

‘We know he will take the strong foundations he put in place last season and build on them in the years to come, and that he will enjoy more success with us.

‘We have a very talented group of goalkeepers and I love to see connections like the one I see in our goalkeeping unit.’

David Raya enjoyed an impressive first season at Arsenal (Picture: Getty)

Raya, meanwhile, said it was a ‘dream come true’ to join Arsenal on a permanent basis.

The 28-year-old spent five years at Brentford before joining Arteta’s squad, making 161 appearances for the west London club, more than half of which came in the Championship.

‘After a year on loan as a Gunner, I can finally say that I’m an Arsenal player for the coming years,’ Raya said.

‘I’m excited to see what the future holds but always living in and enjoying the present. It’s a dream come true to be here and I want to thank you for all the support you have already given me throughout the last year.’

Raya is Arsenal’s first signing of the summer but Arteta intends to sign a new striker, midfielder and left-back before the start of the 2024-25 season.

Arsenal sporting director Edu said: ‘We are so happy to have completed the deal to sign David from Brentford.

‘He had a beautiful first season with us, winning the Premier League Golden Glove. He is a talented international, a great professional and a popular figure at the club.

‘We benefited from all of this last season during his loan with us. David’s signing is another strong example of our recruitment strategy in action, as we continue to build a team that will challenge for major trophies.

‘We know there’s so much more to come from him and we are excited that he will continue to be a big part of the journey we are all on.’

Raya’s permanent move to Arsenal could accelerate England goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale’s departure from the Emirates Stadium.

Ramsdale slipped behind Raya in Arteta’s pecking order last season and has recently been linked with moves to Newcastle United and Chelsea.

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