The former Sampdoria midfielder is already a superstar for the Gunners, even earning comparisons to Patrick Vieira
Lucas Torreira revealed how Unai Emery convinced him to sign for Arsenal rather than remain in Serie A.
The tenacious midfielder has become a mainstay in the Gunners’ midfield, with club legend Martin Keown believing he is the natural heir to Patrick Vieira.
However, it could have been so different.
Before the World Cup, the 22-year-old’s future was up in the air somewhat with plenty of Serie A clubs casting admiring glances at the Sampdoria midfielder.
However, the Arsenal fans favourite was convinced to join the club by new boss Emery in a phone call ahead of his £24.6 million move.
He told Arsenalmedia: “At the end of my last season at Sampdoria there were lots of teams being talked about.
“I never imagined coming here to England because it was mainly Italian clubs being mentioned.
“Before I left for the World cup I got a call from the coach which was a massive surprise for me.
“I knew that I had earned it because of all my hard work and everything that I had done. That phone call made me a happy man.
“It allowed me to relax too because it allowed me to focus all my attention on the national team and the World Cup. I’m so proud to be part of such an important team.”
The Uruguay international has made 16 appearances this season, scoring twice.
His performance in the north London derby against rivals Tottenham Hotspur was worthy of cult hero status – harassing and pressuring the opposition before eventually grabbing his first goal for the club.