Arteta reveals Arsenal defender deal ‘not finalised’, with hurdles to clear

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has revealed that the club have not yet finalised a deal to bring Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes to north London.

Arsenal have agreed a deal with the 22-year-old, who flew to London on Monday for a medical this week.

Indeed, the signing will be a coup for Arteta, who was looking to revamp his defence. The Gunners have chased off competition from Manchester United, Everton and Napoli to sign the Brazilian.

Speaking in his latest press conference on Thursday, however, the Spanish boss insisted his side have not yet got the deal over the line.

“Regarding Gabriel we cannot announce the deal yet, it’s not finalised,” Arteta said (via Football.London).

“You all know he’s a player we like. Everything is okay when both parties sign. Sometimes that in the last stages isn’t easy but we are pretty positive we can do it.

“When we get him I will be pleased. He’s a player we followed and we’re determined he’s the right profile for our squad.”

Gabriel will be Arsenal’s second major signing of the summer, after Willian joined on a free transfer.


Arteta, speaking ahead of Saturday’s Community Shield clash against Liverpool, also offered an update on Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ future.

Wolves saw an opening offer for the midfielder rejected by the Gunners.

“We’re reading a lot of news. It’s not bad other clubs want him but he’s a player I like,” Arteta said.

“The best way to show that is to play him in the biggest games of the season. I’m always open to what the players are feeling.

“If we have the right understanding we have to move forward together.”

Arteta also said Dani Ceballos has made it “clear” that his intention is to remain at Arsenal. The Spaniard has returned to Real Madrid after his season-long loan at The Emirates.

As for Matteo Guendouzi’s future, Arteta said: “Everybody starts from zero in football. What you did two weeks ago doesn’t matter. Everyone will have the same opportunities.”

Pressed on whether Arteta has spoken to the midfielder during pre-season, the manager added: “Yes. He deserves to be treated exactly the same as the others.”