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Transfer Flashback: Gabriel

Back in the latter stages of the January transfer window of 2015, Arsenal sealed a deal for defender Gabriel in a move worth a reported £11.3 million.

The 27-year-old centre back had been playing his football at Spanish side Villarreal before making the move to the Emirates Stadium, what with manager Arsene Wenger seeking to improve his defensive ranks after seeing the likes of Thomas Vermaelen and Johan Djourou leave the club in the summer of 2014.

And Brazilian star Gabriel was the man the Frenchman lured to North London late on in the 2015 January window, which was a move that stimulated a very positive and excited reaction among these Arsenal fans on Twitter…

Yet with the defender struggling to make an immediate impact with the Gunners, and ultimately being sold last year, it’s fair to say that those fans gushing over his arrival were certainly failed by yet another Wenger transfer gaffe.

Ultimately, while there is little doubting that the former Arsenal chief made many telling signings during his 22-year stint in charge of the Gunners, there were plenty of questionable additions as well – the likes of Yaya Sanogo, Kim Kallstrom, and Lucas Perez perhaps the most notable ones in recent times.

And Gabriel’s name is another to add to that list as, while it was pretty clear that Arsenal needed defensive reinforcements after shipping 41 goals in their 38 Premier League games in the 2013/14 campaign, the Brazilian star simply didn’t have the answers.

The 27-year-old made the move to the Emirates Stadium in January 2015, what with the Gunners keeping just seven clean sheets in the first half of the campaign, and while there was clearly much excitement among Arsenal fans following his arrival, Wenger quickly dampened down expectations by underlining his struggles with English.

That paved the way for just six Premier League appearances for the club in the second half of the 2014/15 season, yet things didn’t really get much better for the Brazilian given he managed just 21 league appearances the season after as they came second to Leicester City.

And while he did have a run in the side between November 2016 and February 2017, the centre back still only managed 19 league appearances the season after to underline his lowly position in Wenger’s pecking order – the Frenchman’s signing of Shkodran Mustafi in the summer of 2016 was perhaps the biggest indication that Gabriel had no Gunners future.

And so it proved, as the 27-year-old re-signed for Villarreal in the summer of 2017 to thus bring his Arsenal nightmare to a close, what with the centre back failing to prove his capabilities in English football – this all despite much excitement at his arrival.

Thus, it’s fair to say that those Arsenal fans praising Wenger for Gabriel’s addition were hugely let down, what with the Brazilian star proving to be yet another transfer gaffe from the Frenchman.

Arsenal fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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Article title: Transfer Flashback: Gabriel

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