Arsenal have officially confirmed the transfer of Lille centre-back Gabriel Magalhaes. The Gunners struck a £27million deal with the Ligue 1 side and Gabriel, 22, has put pen to paper on a long-term deal at the Emirates.
The Brazilian passed a medical in London over a week ago and is currently in quarantine having arrived from France. It’s understood he’s signed a five-year deal with the Gunners.
The deal was announced in a video on Facebook in which Willian and David Luiz interviewed the new boy over Zoom.
Gabriel Magalhaes joined Lille for £1.5 million in 2017 from homeland side Avai and twice went out on loan the following season to Troyes and Dinamo Zagreb.
The 6’2″ left-sided centre-back had to be patient on his return to the Stade Pierre Mauroy but eventually broke into the team midway through the 2018/19 season. Spearheaded by Nicolas Pepe, Lille went onto finish second behind Paris Saint-Germain.
Several clubs across Europe have been tracking Gabriel Magalhaes’s development and there was serious competition for his signature from Napoli, Manchester United and Everton. His agent Claims that in choosing to move to Arsenal he has rejected more lucrative terms elsewhere.
Gabriel Magalhaes is Arsenal’s second signing of the summer after the Gunners landed his compatriot Willian on a free transfer from Chelsea.
William Saliba, signed a year ago, has also linked up with the squad after completing a season on loan with former side St Etienne and the pair could form a new-look partnership at the heart of Arsenal’s defence.
Gabriel Magalhaes has been handed Shirt number 6.This was the shirt number for Arsenal’s defenders like Tony Adams (wore Arsenal’s No. 6 between 1993 and 2002) – It was also worn by Philippe Senderos (2006-2008) and Laurent Koscielny (2010-2019).
It’s the second time Arsenal have signed a player from Lille in the past 12 months, having bought Nicolas Pepe for £72m last summer.