Jurrien Timber, a Dutch defender, has joined Arsenal from Ajax for £34 million.
Timber’s cost could grow to £38.5 million, and the 22-year-old will join on a long-term contract.
He will bolster Arsenal’s defense even more now that centre-back William Saliba has agreed to a new four-year contract.
“We’re thrilled Jurrien has joined us. “He is a talented young defender,” Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta stated.
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“Jurrien is a young player, but has already achieved so much. He has experienced what it’s like to go to a major international tournament on more than one occasion, as well as the trophies he has won with Ajax. We look forward to welcoming and integrating Jurrien into the squad.”
The versatile Dutch defender, who can play in the centre of defence or at right-back, had been linked with Manchester United, while Bayern Munich were also known to be interested.
He has won 15 caps for the Netherlands, including four at the Qatar World Cup, where he helped Louis van Gaal’s side reach the quarter-finals.
Timber said he has “always been a fan of Arsenal”, which stemmed from his brothers’ love for the club.
“They were always Arsenal fans, and I just loved seeing Arsenal play. They had big players, the way they played, the style. I just love the club,” said Timber.
“I had this from a young age, but my brothers kind of put that in me. I liked watching Robin van Persie of course, and Thierry Henry. They were my favourite players.”
He will strengthen the spine of an Arsenal team that came second to Manchester City in the Premier League title chase last season and qualified for the Champions League for the first time in six years.
His arrival follows the arrival of 24-year-old German attacker Kai Havertz from Chelsea, while West Ham midfielder Declan Rice is also close to completing a club-record £105 million transfer to the Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal have also signed new contracts with Bukayo Saka, 21, and Reiss Nelson, 23, while experienced Swiss midfielder Granit Xhaka, 30, has joined Bayer Leverkusen for £21.4 million.
Timber made 47 appearances in all competitions for Ajax last season, including all six of their games in the Champions League group stage, and helped the Amsterdam side to win the Eredivisie title in 2021 and 2022.
Arsenal sporting director Edu said: “We are very happy to bring Jurrien to Arsenal. He is a player that we have admired for a long time, so it’s a credit to everyone in our team that made this happen.
“Jurrien is a young, talented international player, who fits our vision of competing with a young, strong squad. I know Jurrien cannot w