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Wednesday, 9 October, 2002, 10:12 GMT 11:12 UK
Gilberto's a city slicker
Silva has been in brilliant form for Arsenal
Silva scored the fastest Champions League goal

Arsenal's Brazilian World Cup winner Gilberto Silva admits he is still adjusting to life in the fast lane.

Gilberto has been a major success in his first two months with the club, a period which has capped a memorable year for the player who turned 26 this week.

A spectacular 12 months has seen the midfielder make his Brazil debut, win the World Cup in Japan and secure a 4.5m move to Arsenal.


I knew that I would face difficulties but I've joined a great team
Gilberto Silva
But city life is the one change that Gilberto is struggling to adjust to.

"It is the first time that I have lived outside Brazil and in a big city," Gilberto told BBC World Service.

"London is too big - I confess that I am afraid to be in the city.

"London is like a Tower of Babel where you can find all kinds of people and everything that you want. I need to adapt myself to this new way of life".

But despite feeling dwarfed in London, Gilberto is surprised at how quickly he has settled at Arsenal, his first club outside Brazil.

"I did not expect such a good reception. I knew that I would face difficulties but I've joined a great team," said the midfielder, who comes from Minas Gerais in the South East of Brazil.

"Everybody is very friendly, including manager Arsene Wenger. He is giving me a lot of support".

Silva was a member of Brazil's World Cup winning team in Brazil
Silva played in the World Cup Final
"I am very surprised by my performance because I was not used to scoring a lot of goals. But I am very happy with this change."

And settling in England and at Arsenal has been helped by the presence of fellow Brazilian Edu.

"Edu is very important to me. He is like a brother. He is giving me support in the club and also in my life.

"He is showing me the city - takes me out to have dinner and helps me with the training."

However, the one process that won't come quickly is in language - and speaking English is proving difficult.

"That is my main problem here. Nevertheless I try to talk with other players, but I make mistakes, I swap words. But I need to try, that is the only way to learn the language".

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