The 26-year-old initially goes to the Emirates on loan before the end of the year with Arsenal paying £4million to obtain the Spaniard before the conclusion of the campaign. If he participates enough to warrant becoming a Gunner on a full-time foundation, the Premier League side must part with an additional £8million.
Given that the extortionate fees being paid by other teams to property centre-backs, £12million could be a real bargain if Marí lives up to his potential.
He originally made his name for Gimnàstic before going to Manchester City in 2016. He impressed enough to grab Flamengo’s eye and proceeded for around the 1million mark last July.
The 26-year-old also impressed at the Club World Cup since the Brazilian team made it all of the ways to the final before losing 1-0 to Liverpool in additional time.
But it was his performance against the Reds that caught the eye. He, together with his team-mates, nullified Mohamed Salah and restricted Trent Alexander-Arnold’s influence.
If he is able to perform like that each and every week, Arsenal have a gem on their hands.
Edu, Arsenal’s technical manager, praised his most recent capture, stating: “Pablo is an experienced player who will provide us with additional defensive quality. We’ve been tracking Pablo’s career for some time and we are extremely happy to have reached an agreement with Flamengo for him to join us initially before the end of the season.
“Together with Mikel and his training team, we are all looking forward to watching Pablo in an Arsenal shirt.”
“When I talked to my agent, it was a major thing that Arsenal were interested in me,” he said. “This is one of the greatest clubs in the world, so I am absolutely delighted to be joining. I’m really excited about playing in this jersey and helping my team.”
“Right now I wish to concentrate on the daily side of things. I believe we will need to set the plans to one side for now because the main thing is to take things one day at a time and concentrate on attaining short-term goals.
“We will need to change the dynamic around the group, so the short-term goals are the main thing. As I’ve said, we’ve got Mikel’s thoughts, aligned with the team, and we will need to execute very nicely to change things”
The Gunners have identified a player who certainly fits in with the way Arteta needs his team to play with. Marí’s use of this ball is exceptional and he is heavily involved in drama.
On average he tries 54 moves per 90 and 88 percent locate a team-mate. It’s even more remarkable when you think he is playing more than 40 percent of his moves forward.
He’s innovative, nearly risky times, yet stays frugal when in possession. It’s the perfect combination for this Arsenal backline.
For instance, Virgil van Dijk wins 75 percent of his and he is lauded as a defensive juggernaut. So Arsenal’s most recent addition keeps great company in this metric.
The only real negative about Marí is a trait some may think about a positive. He’s aggressive. He is proactive and frequently looks to squeeze the resistance. However, England is different. Teams at the Premier League are used to being pushed.
If Arteta can handle Marí’s aggression, he is a wise signing for the Gunners. A trusted defender who can select a pass. Those currently at the Emirates appear to only be able to perform the latter.
This bargain will not dominate the headlines, but it might be what really kickstarts the Arteta era.