Willian’s Arsenal shirt number follows in footsteps of Thierry Henry

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Willian will follow in footsteps of Thierry Henry after joining Arsenal.

The 32-year-old has signed a three-year deal after walking away from Chelsea, but the number 10 he wore at Stamford Bridge following the departure of Eden Hazard to Real Madrid is already taken.

Mesut Ozil has another year on his contract with the famous shirt, pushing his new team-mate back to 12.

The fresh number was most recently worn by Stephan Lichtsteiner and Olivier Giroud, and briefly by Thierry Henry.

Although the club legend wore 14 during his finest years at the club, he wore 12 after returning on loan from New York Red Bulls in 2012.

“I believe he’s a player that can really make a difference for us," Mikel Arteta has said.

"We have been monitoring him for the past few months, we had a clear intention to strengthen in the attacking midfielder and the winger positions [and] he is a player that gives us a lot of versatility, he can play in three or four different positions.

“He has the experience of everything in the football world but to still have the ambition to come here and contribute to bring the club where it belongs.

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  • “I have been really impressed with all the talks I have had with him and how much he wanted to come.”

    Frank Lampard said earlier this month that he would not be disappointed to see Willian join a direct rival, and the comments of his new side suggest that he was begin scouted for some time.

    The Chelsea boss stated: “In terms of being disappointed, certainly as a club I think we have done everything we can to explain to Willian, and mine and his relationship is really close.

    “I would have no feeling of disappointment if he does move on.”

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    Arsenal technical director Edu said: “I know him very well, since a long time ago because we've been working together for the Brazilian national team and of course I was following him because he played for another club.

    “He has a lot of fantastic attributes as a person, as a football player of course, his character.

    “I’m 100 per cent sure that everybody in the dressing room, the fans, myself and Mikel will enjoy having Willian in our side.“

    • Arsenal FC
    • Premier League
    • Chelsea FC
    • Mikel Arteta

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