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Felipe Araruna Becomes The First Signing Of The Mark Bowen Era

The 23-year-old defensive midfielder joins for his maiden spell in England.

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Araruna (left) competing in the Copa Sudamericana
Photo credit should read MARCELO MANERA/AFP via Getty Images

Reading have completed the signing of Brazilian midfielder Felipe Aruruna in a bid to add depth and competition in the defensive-midfield area. The 23 year-old has signed a two-and-half year deal with the Royals on a free transfer, although former club Sao Paulo will have a 40% sell on clause if the Berkshire side sell him in the future.

Araruna has spent the vast majority of his career at the Brazilian first-division side, although his loan move to fellow Brazilian team Fortazela this season had been a minor stumbling block in the Berkshire side’s pursuit of the midfielder. Sao Paulo and Fortazela are more than 3000km apart at different ends of the country, or a 560 hour walk if you fancy stretching your legs (according to the ever-useful Google Maps).

As a young Brazilian with no previous playing spells in England, it’s hard to escape the conclusion that new ‘executive’ Alexandre Mattos has played a part in bringing him to the Madejski Stadium.

Mark Bowen said of the signing:

“Felipe looks like a really bright, young talent who can play in two or three different positions…right-back, on the right side of midfield and as a defensive central midfielder.

“He’s got those Brazilian qualities – the ball is his friend! I spoke with him when he arrived in the country this morning and he is a clever kid with a good personality and his English is very good, which should mean he settles well in England and fits in amongst the first team group.”

Currently, the Royals are not short of options in midfield. Pele, John Swift, Charlie Adam and Andy Rinomhota can all operate in a deep midfield role. However, Pele is set to go back to AS Monaco this summer, and his price tag is unlikely to be cheap. Meanwhile, Charlie Adam’s contract will expire in the summer, after only signing a one-year contract with the Royals last July. It’s unclear as to whether he will be given a contract extension, considering the fact he turns 35 in December.

This may be the few arrivals for Reading in this transfer window, with Mark Bowen hinting that there could be another signing just around the corner in his Bristol City post-match press conference on Tuesday night. Reports also came out on Thursday that Kenyan winger Ayub Timbe was set to join on loan.

It’s no surprise that the Royals are having a much quieter transfer window compared to the previous one, when the club made ten signings in the summer. It’s worth a reminder that they were placed under a soft transfer embargo by the EFL last summer.