Sagna signs for Arsenal
© AFP

Arsenal announced on Thursday the signing of French defender Bacary Sagna from Auxerre on a long-term contract for an undisclosed fee.

Sagna, 24, who won the French Cup with Auxerre in 2005, was recently called up to the French national squad, where he was an unused substitute in the UEFA EURO 2008 qualifying win over Georgia in June.

Born in France to Senegalese parents, Sagna has been a regular for Auxerre over the past three seasons, making 87 appearances for the side where he has played mainly at right-back.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger told the London club's official website: "We are delighted to have signed Bacary Sagna.

"He is a very capable defender and has played consistently well for Auxerre in recent seasons," the Frenchman added. "He plays mainly at right back, but can also play along the defence or in midfield.

"He is strong, quick and enjoys defending but also has a good offensive side to his game. He has a fighting spirit and will be a very good addition to our squad."

Sagna said: "It is great to be joining Arsenal and I'm excited to be playing alongside many great players. I know Abou Diaby from our time together at Auxerre and also Gael Clichy and Mathieu Flamini from the French Under-21 team. "Also Arsene Wenger is a major reason why I have signed for Arsenal. He is an excellent manager with a fantastic record and I am really looking forward to working with him.

"I'm also looking forward to playing at Emirates Stadium and winning trophies for the club and all the supporters."

Arsenal finished fourth in the Premiership last season but were still 21 points adrift of champions Manchester United.