Gabriel is ready to go.

So says Arsene Wenger.

Speaking to the media ahead of the north London derby this weekend, Wenger revealed that his new Brazilian was in good shape and ready to start if he should be called upon.

The former Villarreal centreback arrived for a fee believed to be in the region of £13.5m but faces a fight to force his way into the starting lineup ahead of either Per Mertesacker or Laurent Koscielny who have formed a formidable partnership.

Wenger told assembled reporters

“Gabriel can start.

“At the moment he’s ready to start, he’s just not used to playing in our back four and he hasn’t mastered the language at all. He’s physically ready.

“At the moment I have no special temptation to switch in the middle of our defence because we are going through a strong spell defensively. But he’s ready to play.”

Gabriel will no doubt be on the bench for the game against Tottenham on Saturday with the Arsenal manager not feeling any need to rush him into the side, and with his defence performing better than they have all season, why should he?

Coming to new club in a new country where he doesn’t speak the language, let Gabriel take his time to acclimatise and simply cross your fingers that Lolo’s Achilles can stay in one piece while he does.

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And if they don’t?

Well, Gabriel is, at least, ready.