Danilo Pereira has done little to hide his admiration of Arsenal amid links with a move to Mikel Arteta’s side.
Porto captain Danilo has re-emerged as a transfer target for Arsenal in recent weeks. Originally tracked by the club during Arsene Wenger’s reign, current boss Arteta has reportedly reignited their interest.
The 28-year-old has a €60m release clause, but reports have indicated that Arsenal could sign him for one-third of that value. That would make him a cheaper alternative to Thomas Partey, who is looking more likely to stay at Atletico Madrid.
And Danilo has now put himself firmly in the frame for a move to the Emirates Stadium. The midfielder admits he dreams of the Premier League and thinks Arteta is the kind of coach he would like to develop under.
“I think he [Arteta] is doing a really, really good job there,” Danilo told Stats Perform News.
“He is a really good coach who started as the second coach at [Manchester] City, so he has a little experience and Arsenal play very good football and I think he is doing very well there.
“He is a Spanish coach, he is a bit similar to Portuguese coaches, they also want to play with the ball and improve with the ball, so I think he is a good coach.
“The style I think I can fit there, the way he plays also thinking on the ball, the team always has to be together I think it is a good way to play.
“Of course I like to be here in Porto to be here in my country, but I want to be in a better league like the Premier League.
“I always dreamed about playing in that league. I played also in Serie A but I think the Premier League is a huge league and one day I want to play there, to improve to be a better player. I think it’s the best league in the world.”
DANILO COMPARED TO ARSENAL LEGEND
One thing that would make Danilo an intriguing proposition for Arsenal is his comparisons to Patrick Vieira.
Former Everton, Liverpool and Middlesbrough defender Abel Xavier recently likened Danilo to the Gunners legend.
“Danilo I think is a great midfield player who gives a lot of balance in the team,” Xavier told Stats Perform News earlier this month.
“He plays very simple football and his physical presence is important on the field.
“When I look back, he’s a kind of player like Patrick Vieira when we’re talking about a physical presence.”
And Danilo has now cited Vieira as one of his icons, in a further display of his admiration for Arsenal.
“It is an honour to be compared to this kind of legend,” the Porto star said.
“I also have to think Abel Xavier for these words, sometimes I don’t like to be compared to another football player but to me it is an honour to see Abel Xavier talking about me in that way.
“I grew up seeing Patrick Vieira playing in Arsenal so he is one of my idols so it is very good to hear that from Abel Xavier.”
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