Arsenal technical director Edu says Thomas Partey was part of a “plan” he drew up with Mikel Arteta “six or seven months ago”.
The Gunners paid the Atletico Madrid midfielder’s reported £45m release clause with a little more than half an hour remaining on transfer deadline day.
On signing Partey, Edu told the official Arsenal website: “One day I would like to show the fans how we work, or how we worked, because if you saw my plan six or seven months ago when I did it with Mikel (Arteta), Thomas was there already.
“So you see how many months we had to try to find the right player for the club.
“So many things to do, so many meetings, we had to see how we were going to buy the player, if we had the financial situation to buy the player, the legal process, the financial process, talk to the player, talk to the agent, so there are a lot of things around this but in the end we did it!”
On help from the Gunners’ owners, Edu added: “To be fair, it is a huge investment for this moment which we are in now and of course we need the green light from them.
“When I showed my plan to them, they were so excited, they understand the plan and pressed the green button and then I felt very, very confident because it is not easy to invest a lot of money in this period of time.”