The Gunners have completed the signing of Brazilian defender Gabriel Magalhaes from Lille for 26 million Euros.
The 22-year-old Gabriel Magalhaes made 34 appearances across all competitions for Lille last season as they finished fourth in Ligue 1.
The left-footed center-back joins Arsenal on a long-term contract.
“He is a player we have been studying for a while and he was in demand from many clubs”. Said Edu, Arsenal’s technical director.
“Gabriel is a player of high quality and Arteta and his coaches are looking forward to integrating him into the club”.
Mikel Arteta commented on the signing and said, “We welcome Gabriel to Arsenal. He has many qualities which will make us stronger as a defensive unit and as a team”.
“He has proved with Lille he is a defender with many outstanding attributes and we are looking forward to watching him grow as an Arsenal player”.
Magalhaes said he considered offers from a number of clubs before deciding to join Arsenal.
“It was a very surreal experience. There were offers coming from a few different clubs. I spoke a lot with my family and my agents. I also spoke with some of Lille’s directors. But as I said, this club’s history and traditions and the team project for the next few years were very motivational for my decision to come here”.
“So, here I am. Wearing the Arsenal shirt. I will give my best for it”.
Gabriel Magalhaes at Lille.
It took the defender a long time to make an impact at Lille. However, on his transfer, he has left a big impression on the French club to an extent, the club’s president, Gerard Lopez was full of praise for the Brazilian on and off the pitch.
Lopez spoke of Magalhaes’ physical presence, his power, pace, and “great pass quality”.
Meanwhile, it may take Magalhaes a little time to adapt to the Premier League. But, for Lopez, there are no doubts about his ability as per his words, “he’s got so much talent and physical presence that he could succeed anywhere”.