Arsenal chief Edu could repeat Fabio Vieira transfer with surprise signing

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Arsenal have the potential to pull off a surprise signing – just like they did with Fabio Vieira. The Gunners made Vieira their first high-profile addition earlier in the window and the deal came practically out of the blue.

First mention of Arsenal’s interest in the Portuguese midfielder came on June 16 when it was reported a £34million agreement had been struck with Porto and the player was on his way to London. Just five days later, Vieira’s arrival at the Emirates was confirmed.

Arsenal don’t have five days to wrap up any late deals, with the window shutting on Thursday evening. But it proves technical director Edu can keep a transfer under wraps and move quickly behind the scenes.

A host of players are linked with a move to north London but no deal is said to be advanced. Manager Mikel Arteta wants to sign a winger, with Wolves star Pedro Neto his top target.

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Whether Arsenal can afford to sign Neto remains to be seen, with Wolves holding out for a mega fee for a player who still has five years remaining on his contract. The deal looks increasingly unlikely and alternatives may need to be targeted.

Wilfried Zaha is again linked, while Ukraine star Mykhaylo Mudryk is also reportedly of interest. Arsenal have spent around £120million so far this summer but have not brought in any new players since Oleksandr Zinchenko’s arrival over a month ago.

Arteta made it clear last week that he is still keen to make new additions. And he admitted signing a winger has been a plan he has had all summer if Nicolas Pepe were to leave the club.

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Pepe has joined Nice on a season-long loan to open up a space in the squad. Arteta said: “If we can implement the plan that we have, we will try to do that.

“In the plan, that [Pepe’s loan move] was something that could happen – now it’s a reality and we’ve been preparing the last two months in order to achieve what we want. Whether that’s possible or not, we will see.”

Time is running out for the Gunners to carry out the plan Arteta put in place. But in Vieira, Edu has proven a surprise signing could be on the cards.

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