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Saturday 21 October 2017

Wenger's joy at signing of 'excellent' Ospina

David Ospina. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire
David Ospina. Photo: Mike Egerton/PA Wire

Arsenal have announced the signing of Colombia goalkeeper David Ospina from Nice on a long-term contract.

The 25-year-old, who impressed as Colombia reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup in Brazil, has moved to the Emirates Stadium for an undisclosed fee.

Gunners manager Arsene Wenger said: "David Ospina is an excellent goalkeeper, with good experience and a proven record of performing with Nice and Colombia. He will add strength to our squad and we are very pleased that he will be joining us."

The keeper is expected to make his first appearance for Arsenal during the Emirates Cup friendly tournament, which takes place in north London next weekend.

Ospina made 189 Ligue 1 appearances over six years with Nice having joined the south coast club from Colombian club Atletico Nacional in 2008.

He made his senior debut for Atletico aged just 17 and has been a full Colombia international since 2007, making his first start for Los Cafeteros in a 2010 World Cup qualification match against Bolivia.

At Arsenal he will provide competition for first-choice keeper Wojciech Szczesny while helping to fill the gap left by the departed Lukasz Fabianski, who has joined Swansea.

Nice coach Claude Puel confirmed Ospina's move to London had been ratified and told Gunners fans they could expect some "quality" displays from the new signing.

After Nice's friendly defeat to Brentford, Puel said: "It's confirmed, yes. It's a good affair for Arsenal because he's a very good player. You will see next season the quality of this player. It's fantastic for him. It's important for him to try another league, another club and Arsenal is a fantastic club for him.

"David Ospina can take the goalkeeping position at Arsenal because his qualities are very strong and... 'magnifique'. You saw in the World Cup how important a goalkeeper he is."

Another player expected to move to the Emirates Stadium is Southampton defender Calum Chambers, with a £16million deal understood to be under discussion.

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