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Pires, 26, and Edu join Arsenal on long term contracts for undisclosed fees - but the Gunners are understood to have shelled out around £15 million to bolster their midfield.

The club also paid Real Mallorca £7 million for Cameroonian midfielder Lauren Bisan - although the moves could signal the departure of star trio Patrick Vieira, Marc Overmars and Emmanuel Petit, who are said to be wanted by big clubs in Spain and Italy.

Wenger told the Arsenal website: "We will again be challenging for the Premiership title and hoping to make further progress in this year's UEFA Champions League, so we are very pleased to have signed Robert Pires and Edu.

"Both players are very talented, versatile midfielders with fantastic ability, who will give us an extra dimension in facing the demands of the forthcoming campaign.

"Of course we are aiming to strengthen the squad as much as possible and we are hoping to add one more name before the start of the new season."

Arsenal are said to have offered £14 million to Spanish champions Deportivo La Coruna for Brazilian midfielder Flavio Conceiçao, while Swedish striker Kennet Andersson has also been linked with a move to north London.

Pires, who came off the bench to set up France’s winner in the Euro 2000 final, completed his long-awaited move to Arsenal on Monday before joining up with his Gallic team-mates for a victory parade in Paris.

"The past month has been like a dream for me, firstly to win Euro 2000 with France and now joining such a great club as Arsenal," said the speedy winger.

"I have great admiration and respect for Arsene Wenger, who has transformed the careers of my fellow countrymen Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira, Emmanuel Petit, Gilles Grimandi and of course, Nicolas Anelka. I am very much looking forward to some exciting times with the Gunners."

Central midfielder Edu (22), who has Portuguese dual nationality, reportedly cost around £6.5 million. Eduardo Cesar Daud Gaspar - to call him by his full name - won the Brazilian League title in the past two seasons plus the 1999 Sao Paulo State Championship and the 2000 FIFA World Club Championship.

The Brazilian told the Arsenal website. "I have had some wonderful years with Corinthians but am now relishing the prospect of playing with Silvinho, who is a former team mate of mine. I know Arsenal is a club with great history and great supporters and it is my aim to help the club win more trophies."

The deal to sign Pires - who was close to joining Real Madrid - was completed on Friday when the Frenchman met his agent Frederic Dobraje in the Les Bleus’ hotel. According to reports in the French press, Dobraje handed him a four-year contact from the Gunners that guaranteed the former Metz player a weekly salary in the region of £17,000.

Pires had stalled on deciding where his future lay after Real Madrid tabled a late bid, though he did admit after the game: "We will see what the people at Madrid want. Money is not the most important thing, but how the game is played."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been in regular telephone contact with Pires, including calls on Wednesday evening and Thursday afternoon, which proved to Pires that he had confidence in the player.

A plane chartered by Arsenal picked Pires up in Rotterdam and flew to London, where he met with two lawyers, his agent and Arsenal chief executive David Dein.

Wenger will play Pires at left midfield - either in competition with Overmars or replacing the Dutchman who could be on his way to Serie A later this week.
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