For the player, the club and even fans, the completion of Eduardo’s move to Shakhtar Donetsk was a big ‘hurray!’.
The Croatian international has left for Ukraine after a bittersweet three years at Arsenal which saw him score 20 goals in 67 appearances as a Gunner.
A ‘bittersweet’ time in north London they say, but for Eduardo, it was largely bitter. And had the word ‘if’ been a genuine adjective, it would describe the 27-year-old’s spell at Arsenal perfectly.
Only Martin Taylor knows what Eduardo might have achieved in England – after the former Birmingham defender halted the Croatian’s superb start to his Arsenal career; a start which saw him net 12 times in 22 starts during his debut season in 2007/08.
Somehow, Eduardo would recover from one of the most brutal injuries ever witnessed in this sport, and somehow, he would deliver a handful of the classy moments he deprived us of during much of the 2008/09 camapign.
A stunning header in his first game back against Cardiff in the FA Cup and then a sublime volley against Burnley were memorable but only false promises that he had rediscovered his true form.
Arsenal were patient and gave Eduardo the entire 2009/10 season to bring back the magic, but inevitably, it was clear his fitness (and definitely not ability) was no longer at the level Premier League football demanded. Thus, Eduardo sought a less demanding challenge elsewhere, completing a £6million switch to Ukraine today.
He leaves with the fairest of farewells.
Eduardo da Silva’s finest moments as an Arsenal player were his…
- Brace against Blackburn in momentous 3-2 Carling Cup win (2007).
- Brace at Everton which fired a stunning 4-1 comeback victory (2008).
- Goal-scoring return against Cardiff in FA Cup (2009).
- Volley against Burnley in FA Cup (2009).