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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger
"He has all the qualities we are missing in the squad"
 real 14k

Francis Jeffers
"This is a special day for me"
 real 56k

Thursday, 14 June, 2001, 16:43 GMT 17:43 UK
10m Jeffers moves to Arsenal
Jeffers is on his way to Highbury
Jeffers is on his way to Highbury
Francis Jeffers has joined Arsenal from Everton in a 10m deal revealed by BBC Sport Online.

The two clubs have agreed terms - which are understood to be an initial payment of 8m with another 2m dependent on appearances.

A news conference unveiling Jeffers as an Arsenal player was held on Thursday evening.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger indicated he planned to stick to a 4-4-2 formation, placing the future of at least one Gunners striker in doubt.


I didn't want to go anywhere else - even though I had other offers
  Arsenal's new striker Francis Jeffers

Sylvain Wiltord looks favourite to leave of the current top four frontmen, with Thierry Henry, Kanu and Dennis Bergkamp set to stay.

Arsenal refused to confirm either the transfer fee or the length of their new signing's contract.

News of the deal was broken at about 1745 BST by BBC Sport Online's chief football writer Phil McNulty.

Jeffers later revealed he had needed little persuading to join Arsenal.

"Once I met the manager and the chairman my mind was made up," he said.

"I didn't want to go anywhere else even though I had other offers.

"It's a massive club, one of the biggest in Europe and for them to be interested in me is magnificent.

"Playing with world class players I'm definitely looking to improve."

  Francis Jeffers factfile
1981: Born Liverpool, 25 January
1998: Signs professionally for Everton from trainee
1999: February - makes full debut for Everton at Derby. Scores first goal for club at home to Coventry in the FA Cup
April - wins England squad call-up before friendly in Hungary
May - finishes 1998-99 season as Everton's second highest goalscorer with seven goals.
August - hands in a transfer request but later withdraws it
2000: September - After six goals in nine games suffers injuries which keep him out of action until the New Year.
2001: February - Scores on his return to first-team action in the 2-1 home win over Leicester
14 June - Joins Arsenal in 10m deal

It is a dream move for the England Under-21 striker, who refused to discuss personal terms with Newcastle United in the hope of Arsene Wenger making a move.

Everton put Jeffers up for sale after he rejected a proposed 28,000-a-week contract that would have made him the highest-paid player in the club's history.

Arsenal have been long-time admirers of Jeffers, and they now see him as the natural strike partner for Thierry Henry.

Everton boss Walter Smith is now expected to use part of the Jeffers cash to fund a 3m move for Anderlecht striker Tomasz Radzinski.

Sunderland, Leeds, Tottenham and Middlesbrough were all reported to have expressed an interest in securing the signature of Jeffers.

The striker travelled down to London on Thursday morning to discuss personal terms and undergo a medical.

In his short career with the club he supported as a boy, Jeffers managed to form an impressive partnership with Kevin Campbell but made fewer than 40 starts, scoring 20 goals in the process.

Ankle and shoulder problems limited his appearances last season to just 14.

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