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Vieira joy for Juventus

Published: Friday 15 July 2005, 23.36CET
Italian champions Juventus FC have pulled off the €20m signing of Arsenal FC's France midfielder Patrick Vieira.

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Published: Friday 15 July 2005, 23.36CET

Vieira joy for Juventus

Italian champions Juventus FC have pulled off the €20m signing of Arsenal FC's France midfielder Patrick Vieira.
Italian champions Juventus FC have pulled off the biggest transfer coup of the summer so far by signing Arsenal FC captain Patrick Vieira.

End of an era
The two clubs have agreed a deal totalling €20m for the 29-year-old French international midfielder, who has signed a five-year contract with Juventus after passing a medical. Vieira's move away from Arsenal ends a nine-year association with the club he joined for €5.7m in 1996 after spells with AC Milan and AS Cannes.

Glorious spell
Vieira played a major part in transforming Arsenal's fortunes under manager Arsène Wenger, helping the Londoners to Premiership and FA Cup doubles in 1998 and 2002, as well as a further league title in 2004 and FA Cup successes in 2003 and 2005. In all, he made 279 Premiership appearances.

'Meet a new challenge'
"I made the decision to leave because I felt it was time to have a new challenge," Vieira said. "But that does not mean I was unhappy or that I was having a problem at Arsenal. It was just that I had the feeling I needed to grow and meet a new challenge, and I feel Juventus was the best challenge for me."

Wenger tribute
Wenger added: "Patrick was a great player for us, one of the greatest in the club's history and I feel I had a special relationship with him because I made him come here. His impact, not only at Arsenal but in English football overall, was just tremendous."

Last updated: 15/07/05 13.55CET

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