Arsenal in a battle for Gabriel Paulista

The Gunners are expected to continue their transfer bid for Villarreal centre-back Gabriel Paulista. However, the completion of the deal before the deadline of the transfer window will not be a straightforward ordeal for the club as the 24 year old is experiencing problems in finalizing visa arrangements for the move.

The club will have to overcome a work visa hearing before the defender can play in England as regulations state that the player must have established himself as a Brazilian International player in order to attain the proper work permit.

Both Arsenal and the uncapped player are interested in negotiating a deal with reports claiming that a fee of £15 million has already been accepted by Villarreal for the centre back. Betting expert sites like are already speculating on the impact his arrival might have on the chances of the Gunners winning the Premier League title, however Paulista will first have to receive a work permit from the UK Home Office to be able to play as does not meet the automatic work permit criteria.

Rules state that only players who have played 75 percent of matches for a nation inside FIFA's top 70 within the past two years are eligible for a work permit, which rules the player out.

Arsenal now have to convince the Football Association panel that the player is an “exceptional talent” so therefore should be granted permission to work in the United Kingdom. The FA would then pass the recommendation to the Home Office giving them the final say on the matter.

According to reports from Spain, the Villarreal Manager Marcelino García admitted that “If both Gabriel and the club believe that his sale to Arsenal is the best for all parties, we will accept."

This comes as the Gunners have confirmed the transfer of polish youngster Krystian Bielik from Legia Warsaw for an amount though to be in the range of £2.5 million. The midfielder is expected to player with the Under 21’s side first before progression into the senior squad.