Reports - Arsenal looking at Gabriel Paulista but may face issues

Arsenal reported to have dropped their interest in St Etienne's Loic Perrin but may face work permit issues in pursuit of Villarreal's Gabriel Paulista.

To be fair to Arsene Wenger, he does appear to have stepped up Arsenal’s pursuit of defensive additions.

The Gunners are being linked with enough supposed top targets to fill an entire squad with centre-halves.

Virgil van Dijk and Winston Reid are said to have figured on the radar for some time, and there may be deals to be done for British-based stars on the books at Celtic and West Ham United respectively.

Wenger is, however, also scouring the European market for potential bargains.

St Etienne’s Loic Perrin emerged as a leading candidate to join the Emirates Stadium ranks, with the 29-year-old confirming that interest has been expressed.

French publication L’Equipe are now reporting that Arsenal have decided to turn their attention elsewhere, despite making contact with Perrin’s Ligue 1 employers.

Villarreal’s Gabriel Paulista is now the focus of their attention, but any deal there could prove problematic.

At the age of 24 he would be a better long-term option, but he is a Brazilian who is yet to represent his country at any level.

Securing a work permit would be difficult as a result and it may be that the Gunners decide that the effort required to push through a switch is not worth the hassle.

If they have been offered an indication that an agreement can be reached to bring Paulista to the Premier League from La Liga then they should look to strike quickly but if not, it may be that their focus has to shift once more.

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