open menulivescore

In Focus: Jorginho a welcome addition for title-chasing Arsenal
Copy icon

Dan Fitch
Jorginho signed for Arsenal on deadline day
Jorginho signed for Arsenal on deadline day

Arsenal made a surprise January transfer window deadline-day swoop to buy Jorginho from Chelsea. 

The Gunners paid £12million for the Italian international midfielder, having failed in their pursuit of Brighton’s Moises Caicedo. 

Signed to provide cover and competition for Thomas Partey, the 31-year-old made his debut as a second-half substitute in the 1-0 defeat at Everton last weekend. 

Ahead of Arsenal’s home match with Brentford on Saturday, we look at what Jorginho can bring to the North Londoners' title fight. 

Plan B

Mohamed Elneny's knee injury had left Arsenal short of a deputy for Partey. 

With Albert Sambi Lokonga having failed to impress and ultimately sent out on loan to Crystal Palace, the Gunners faced the potential disintegration of their title bid, if their dominant Ghanaian was ruled out for any length of time. 

Caicedo was identified as the player that boss Mikel Arteta wanted to add to his squad, but despite making a £70m bid, Brighton refused to sell the promising Ecuadorian. Jorginho was the cut-price alternative. 

On the face of it, the Seagulls midfielder was much more of a direct replacement for Partey and, at 21, represented a signing with one eye on the future. 

Jorginho is a different proposition. Given an 18-month contract, he was brought in to do a short-term job. The question is whether he is equipped to fulfil the role that could be asked of him.


Jorginho failed to prevent Arsenal sliding to defeat at Everton
Jorginho failed to prevent Arsenal sliding to defeat at Everton

Like Partey, Brazil-born Jorginho is comfortable anchoring the midfield. They both excel at distribution of the ball and have fine positional sense. 

And where Jorginho would be considered the superior in the anchorman role is with his passing and ability to control a game. 

It is those qualities that could prove to be an important factor in the title race. The Euro 2020 winner may turn out to be the perfect supersub for Arteta’s team. 

Premier League all-time top scorer Alan Shearer endorsed the move, saying: "I really do like the Jorginho signing.

"He will bring a wealth of experience and that know-how to win and to get over the line.

"There are still going to be big questions and big times to navigate over the coming months.

"So who better to get in January than a guy like Jorginho who has been there and done it at every level."

Controlling games

Jorginho was an influential presence in Chelsea's midfield
Jorginho was an influential presence in Chelsea's midfield

Arteta brought on Jorginho for Partey in the 59th minute of their weekend defeat at Everton. 

Moments later, Arsenal conceded the only goal of the game from a corner, but the manager’s intentions were clear. Needing a breakthrough, he tasked the substitute with changing the game.

Jorginho is known for the reliability of his metronomic passing. Once he has drawn out the opposition, the Champions League winner has an underrated ability of being able to clip forward passes behind the defence, for attacking team-mates to run on to. 

So Arteta may turn to him as an alternative to Partey when he needs a goal. More often, the manager will introduce him to see out games. 

In that instance, Jorginho could play alongside Partey, creating a double-pivot that is defensively sound and which could take control of the game in the latter stages, starving the opposition of possession. 

Experienced figure

Jorginho has long been admired by Mikel Arteta
Jorginho has long been admired by Mikel Arteta

Though the purchase of Jorginho was somewhat opportunistic and a second choice, he is a player that Arteta has wanted to work with for some time. 

On joining Arteta's project, the ex-Napoli man discussed his relationship with the Spanish coach: "I know he tried a few times to get me before and it didn't happen due to other reasons, not because of my wishes.

"It's an amazing club, a big one, and I'm really excited and happy to be here."

So despite the temporary nature of the deal, it would seem likely that Arteta will have a specific plan for how he wants to use Jorginho and that the deep-lying playmaker will see plenty of football. 

The relatively small transfer fee ensures that Arsenal can go into the summer with the sufficient funds to once again bid for Caicedo or even another expensive target, such as Declan Rice. 

With his experience of winning major honours for Chelsea and Italy, Jorginho is a signing for the here and now that can add to Arsenal’s hopes of winning this season’s Premier League.


Premier LeagueArsenalJorginho
LiveScore logo

LiveScore: Live Sport Updates

Footbal Scores & Sports News

App storeGoogle play