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£15million Arshavin is unlikely to play against Spurs

PUBLISHED: 07:54 04 February 2009 | UPDATED: 15:54 07 September 2010

Andrei Arshavin is unlikely to make his Arsenal debut at Tottenham on Sunday after barely playing since the Russian Premier League season ended in November. The £15million signing from Zenit St Petersburg is believed to be two weeks away from full fitness

Andrei Arshavin is unlikely to make his Arsenal debut at Tottenham on Sunday after barely playing since the Russian Premier League season ended in November.

The £15million signing from Zenit St Petersburg is believed to be two weeks away from full fitness after finally completing his protracted transfer from his hometown club on Tuesday.

The Russia international, who speaks good English after taking extensive lessons in recent months, spent his first day as an Arsenal employee exploring the club's history.

"I discovered that between 1931 and 1933 Arsenal won the title three years in succession," he said, after a tour of the club's museum.

But after spending time at Zenit's pre-season training camp in Dubai last month, the 27-year-old, who has scored 15 times in 41 games for his country, will have to be patient before making his own mark at his new club.

Arshavin, though, was clearly excited at securing a move he has been coveting since impressing Wenger at last summer's European Championships.

"I am looking forward to making the Arsenal supporters happy and helping this great club win trophies. I'm happy to be an Arsenal player, it was my dream," said Arshavin, who will wear the No23 shirt.

"I have followed each (Arsenal) game from the moment when I met Arsene Wenger. He told me every time I talked to him: 'I want you to come to Arsenal'. He had confidence in me."

Wenger believes Arshavin, who has twice won the Russian Player of the Year award, is an "impact player" who can add a new dimension to his young side.

"We are delighted to have signed Andrei. He is a player I have admired for a long time," the Frenchman said.

"He is a versatile player with great experience, who will add real quality to our squad.

"Andrei is an exciting impact player with a huge amount of ability and has been an influential force with both Zenit St Petersburg and the Russian national team in recent seasons.


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