Arsenal’s Takehiro Tomiyasu draws comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo by former sporting director

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Arsenal’s Takehiro Tomiyasu draws comparisons with Cristiano Ronaldo by former sporting director

Tomiyasu and his immediate impact at Arsenal

When you are voted as Man of the Match by the fans in your first North London Derby for Arsenal, it is fair to say you are having the time of your life. In the case of Japanese international Takehiro Tomiyasu, there has potentially been no better summer signing for Mikel Arteta than this one, though Aaron Ramsdale may disagree.

The 22-year-old former Bologna standout has hit the ground running in north London since completing his move from Emilia-Romagna for £17million in a deal that saw Arsenal pip Tottenham for his signature.

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In three appearances thus far for Arsenal, Mikel Arteta’s men have netted all three of their Premier League wins of the 2021-22 season, while securing two clean sheets in the process.

While all the credit cannot go to Tomiyasu singlehandedly given the contributions of Aaron Ramsdale, Ben White, and Gabriel in a defensive cadre that looks the business during the Gunners run of form, the question of the right-back birth at the Emirates has undoubtedly been answered.

Comparisons to Cristiano Ronaldo highlight a brilliant summer capture

Though there was a degree of uncertainty surrounding the deal to bring Tomiyasu to the Emirates from questions about his position to whether or not the deal was a panic buy, there are some that have never lost faith in the Japanese international; including former Sint-Truindense sporting director Andre Pinto.

Why Arsenal fan-favorite Takehiro Tomiyasu has been compared to Cristiano Ronaldo

OSAKA, JAPAN – JULY 12: Takehiro Tomiyasu of Japan is seen during the U-24 international friendly match between Japan and Honduras at the Yodoko Sakura Stadium on July 12, 2021 in Osaka, Japan. (Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images)

Pinto recently spoke with Goal about Tomiyasu and just the type of player he is and why the Belgian side was so desperate to sign the Fukuoka-native;

“What is amazing about Tomi is that he doesn’t accept anything that isn’t success. He’s not lucky, nothing for Tomi comes because he’s lucky. He’s just a hard working player.

You find a lot of dedicated players, but Tomi has a little bit of the Cristiano Ronaldo mentality in terms of determination, in terms of working hard and in terms of eating healthy. He is the type of player who is never satisfied. He will always continue to work hard to keep developing himself.

“I worked with our CEO, Takayuki Tateishi, at FC Tokyo so we knew Tomi from Japan. He was 19 at the time and what captured our attention the most was his potential. It’s not every day that you have a player who is 1.88m and has the speed, the physicality and the technique.

We believed so much in Tomi that when he came he had an ankle injury and was recovering. Our doctors were saying ‘you can’t sign this player, he is injured’. So our CEO went to the board and said ‘you can take him, I guarantee it’. This is how much confidence we had in Tomi at the time.”

Tomiyasu went on to perform brilliantly in what would be his only season in Belgium with De Kanaries before moving to Bologna in the summer of 2019 in a €7million deal that saw Sint-Truidense net nearly a 10x profit on the €800k they spent.

All signs point to Takehiro Tomiyasu being a headline transfer move for the Arteta-Edu regime that could well end in Arsenal securing their preferred back four for at least the next five years.

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