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Reports: Arsenal set to offload four first-team stars in order to facilitate Gabriel Magalhaes signing 

Arsenal are set to free up their wage bills in order to fund Gabriel Magalhaes
Arsenal are set to free up their wage bills in order to fund Gabriel Magalhaes' transfer
ANALYST
Modified 23 Aug 2020
Rumors

Arsenal are reportedly set to trim their squad in order to fund the transfer of LOSC Lille's Gabriel Magalhaes.

If reports from the Express are to be believed, Mikel Arteta has decided to offload as many as four defenders to build on the team's quality and facilitate the potential signing of Magalhaes.

The Gunners have an array of centre-halves in their ranks, but not all have lived up to the expectations in the Premier League. With Arteta poised to oversee a squad revamp come next season, a host of Arsenal players are expected to depart the club.

Among the players mentioned in the above report, Rob Holding and Calum Chambers are two candidates destined for an exit. Besides, two out of Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Shkodran Mustafi and Pablo Mari are also likely to follow suit.


Also read: Arsenal Transfer News Roundup: Gunners transfer list 10 players, Arsenal in talks for Ligue 1 sensation, and more — 22nd August 2020


Arteta aiming to cut out the deadwood at Arsenal

Arsenal target Gabriel Magalhaes enjoyed a breakthrough season at LOSC Lille
Arsenal target Gabriel Magalhaes enjoyed a breakthrough season at LOSC Lille

As per reports from the Times, Arsenal have done brilliantly to beat both Manchester United and Italian giants Napoli to Gabriel' signature.

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The defender, 22, enjoyed a breakthrough season in Ligue 1 with Lille. He amassed more appearances in a league term than he had before, in total 34 of them across all competitions.

The Arsenal target has made the football world take notice of his intelligent defending. A confident player on the ball, Gabriel is apt with his distribution, while also being one of the quicker central defenders around.

Supposedly, Arsenal have already snapped him up for £27 million and are set to grant him a five-year bumper deal.

Earlier, Lille president Gerard Lopez had lifted the lid on Arsenal's interest in the defender, stating:

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"I think it's fair to say that Arsenal are a high interest to him, Napoli is a high interest to him. We've given him plenty of time to make up his mind. We've always said, 'Look, if we have an agreement with two clubs or three clubs and the agreements are the same then we are not going to create a bidding competition', and that choice, I don't think I'm giving up too much if I tell you that that choice is probably today or tomorrow."

The reason why Arsenal are forced to free up space is due to the constricted budget offered to Arteta despite a fine first season.

Rob Holding and Calum Chambers are two players set to leave Arsenal
Rob Holding and Calum Chambers are two players set to leave Arsenal

Presently, Arsenal have no fewer than eight centre-backs among their ranks. According to the aforementioned source, the highly-rated William Saliba is also on his way to linking up with the first-team.

The youngster would fight for his place in the starting XI with the likes of Mustafi, Luiz and Gabriel, if he arrives.

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Arsenal's relationship with Lille, as seen with the big-money transfer of Nicolas Pepe, perhaps handed the North Londoners a huge boost for Magalhaes' pursuit.

Arteta and his Arsenal side will kick next season off with a Community Shield match against Liverpool, on August 29.


Also read: Reports: Arsenal set to seal Gabriel Magalhaes signing

Published 23 Aug 2020, 01:16 IST
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