Arsenal have confirmed the signing of Albert Lokonga from Anderlecht in a deal that could total €17.5 million including add ons.

The 21-year-old midfielder joins Mikel Arteta’s midfield as a replacement for Granit Xhaka who is expected to sign for AS Roma in the near future.

Lokonga made his debut for Anderlecht in 2017 and has since made 78 appearances for the Jupiler League giants, predominantly in a holding midfield role. That tally would be even higher were it not for a seven-month spell on the sidelines caused by a ruptured cruciate ligament picked up in 2018.

Already a Belgian under-21 internationals, he was called up to the senior squad by Roberto Martinez in March but is yet to make his full debut.

Speaking about the deal, Mikel Arteta said: “Albert is a very intelligent player who has shown great maturity in his performances during his development.

“He has been coached well by Vincent Kompany and his team at Anderlecht. I know Vincent very well and he talks so highly about Albert and the positive impact he had to Anderlecht in recent seasons.

“We’re confident Albert’s ready for the next stage in his development and we’re looking forward to welcoming a new member to our squad with his quality and presence.”

Welcome to Arsenal, Albert. We look forward to seeing what you can bring to the team.

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