According to the Daily Mail, Arsenal have finally beaten off Napoli and Manchester United to win the race to sign Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes.
The transfer link has refused to go away this summer and it appears that the Gunners are edging ever closer to completing the sought-after signing.
A Brazilian central defender, the report claims he is valued at £22 million, with Arsenal looking set to bolster their defensive ranks this summer.
Mikel Arteta’s team were occasionally suspect at the back and the capture of Gabriel should help reinforce the solidity of the defensive unit.
Last season Magalhaes started 23 games for Lille, helping the Ligue 1 outfit to fourth-place before the season was cancelled in March.
The 22-year-old should be a decent acquisition for the Gunners, with the player widely regarded as one of Europe’s top talent.
He is comfortable playing out from the back, strong in the air and also likes to get a tackle in, with his defending very much in the modern-day format.
It will be the second season in succession that Arsenal have poached a player from Lille. Last summer Unai Emery parted with £72 million to sign winger Nicolas Pepe from the French club.
TBR View – Arsenal fans will love this addition
The Gunners faithful were happy to get Willian over the line and they’d be equally buzzing to see Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sign a new deal.
One area they all want to see strengthened is central defence, however, and with that in mind, Gabriel will delight supporters.
Last season in Ligue 1 he looked solid and it’s anticipated he will arrive at Arsenal and become a regular performer.
David Luiz and Shkodran Mustafi both proved erratic at times last season and some younger blood certainly won’t do the Gunners any harm.
Gabriel could become the Gunners’ most important summer recruit by some distance, given just how badly the club needs strengthening at the back.