Arsene Wenger reveals that new signing Gabriel is set to make his debut against Aston Villa.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that new defensive signing Gabriel is available to make his Premier League debut against Aston Villa on Sunday.
The Gunners announced the signing of Gabriel on Wednesday (via Arsenal.com) having been locked in negotiations with Villarreal for a number of weeks. The Brazilian is yet to gain an international cap, which cast doubt over whether or not the defender would be able to secure a work permit – an obstacle Arsenal overcome with minimal fuss.
Having featured in Villarreal’s past 17 La Liga games, Gabriel is physically ready to make his Arsenal bow, and Wenger is aiming to throw the defender straight in.
“The only [other] difference is that Gabriel is available,” Wenger told Arsenal’s official website.
“We’ll check him how he is physically but he should be alright to be available.”
Wenger suddenly has a plethora of defensive options which is a stark contrast to the predicament the Frenchman left himself in earlier on in the season, with Nacho Monreal asked to play in an awkward centre-back role.
First-choice pairing Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny will now have serious competition for their places as Gabriel looks to build on his already growing reputation.
Arsenal hope to continue their impressive form as they bid to finish in a top four place for a record 18th consecutive year.