Gabriel Paulista appears to be closing in on a move to Arsenal.

Letting slip at the Diamond Club Q&A that the deal was ‘virtually done,’ Arsene Wenger was unusually open about the possible transfer this week, something we thought could indicate that the deal was almost complete – why else show your hand, especially with Manchester United sniffing around the centreback?

Paulista, Villareal’s captain, was not included in their squad for their game against Levante on Saturday night, with reports claiming it is because of his pending move to Arsenal.

At the same Q&A which took place earlier this week Wenger, confirmed the reason that Arsenal did not buy a centreback in the summer window was because there were very few around, highlighting Manchester United and Barcelona’s similar search which saw both clubs desperate to sign Thomas Vermaelen who hasn’t even been able to play this season due to injury.

It does seem like it is just a matter of time before Arsenal announce Paulista’s arrival – depending on if they can get him an ‘exceptional talent’ work visa of course.

It is thought Arsenal have triggered the 24-year-old’s £15m release clause.

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Writer. Feminist. Dreamer. Gooner. Owner of DailyCannon.com, writing about Arsenal since 2008. Sometimes found in the Guardian, Vice.com & elsewhere talking queer issues, politics & football. If in doubt, assume sarcasm.