Joe Aribo fulfils Premier League ambition with move to Southampton

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Joe Aribo says his switch from Rangers to Southampton on a four-year deal has fulfilled a lifelong ambition to play in the Premier League.

Aribo, who scored 26 goals in 149 appearances for Rangers following his 2019 move from Charlton, had earlier thanked the Glasgow giants on social media for “an amazing journey being part of this special club”.

The 25-year-old midfielder told the Southampton website: “It’s an amazing club with a lot of history here, and it’s a good plan with what’s to come next.

“I’m really excited for the journey. The Premier League is the best league in the world.

“I’ve been watching it since I was a young boy, it’s always been a goal for me to play here and show what I can do on this stage.

“It’s an amazing feeling, a dream come true.

“This is where I’ve wanted to be since I was a child growing up playing, so to say that I’m here now is really exciting.”

London-born Aribo has won 20 caps for Nigeria and celebrated Premiership and Scottish Cup success during his time in Scotland.

He also scored in Rangers’ Europa League final defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt in May.

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl said: “Joe is a player with many qualities to his game, and we are very excited to welcome him to the squad in time for the pre-season trip to Austria.

“We believe Joe can bring energy and creativity to our side.

“Feeling comfortable in so many different positions is very helpful for a manager and shows he has a high level of football intelligence, with the ability to take on new information quickly.

“He has played a lot of games already in his career, at a very high level, and his performances in the Europa League prove he has the quality to play in the Premier League.

“This is a big ambition for him, and he is hungry to show everybody he can do it.”

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