Arsenal closing in on Gabriel signing, Napoli still in the running

Arsenal are closing in on the signing of Gabriel Magalhaes from Lille but Napoli remain in the running, according to Italian media outlet Calciomercato

The Gunners are very close to finding an agreement with Lille for Gabriel. They have made a bid of £25.3 million for the player which the French club have deemed acceptable. It is also being reported that the North London club have agreed personal terms with the 22 year old centre back. 

Napoli reportedly have a gentleman’s agreement with Lille to sign Gabriel but this transfer depends on whether the Italian club are able to sell Kalidou Koulibaly, who has attracted interest from Manchester City. Gabriel is open to a move to the Naples based club but Koulibaly is still far from certain to leave this summer. City and Napoli are yet to agree on a fee for the Senegalese centre back and it looks unlikely that this deal will be completed in the coming days.

The Italian club will have to accelerate their efforts to strike a deal with Manchester City for Koulibaly because Gabriel is unlikely to wait for too long before making his final decision. Napoli have offered Lille £22.6 million for the Brazilian defender which is less than the bid submitted by Arsenal. 

Aurelio De Laurentiis, the Napoli chairman, wants to sign Gabriel to please his club’s head coach Gennaro Gattuso who is understood to be a big admirer of the player. It is looking increasingly unlikely that this move will be successful as Koulibaly is still at the club. Unless that situation changes in the next few days, Napoli will turn their attention towards striking a deal with Juventus that would see Arkadiusz Milik head to the Allianz Stadium in exchange for either Daniele Rugani or Cristian Romero who are both central defenders. 

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