GABRIEL MAGALHAES was reportedly left awestruck by Mikel Arteta after a phone call with the Arsenal boss.
It is thought the chat helped to convince the Lille star to seal a transfer to North London switch, according to Corriere Dello Sport.
Earlier this week the 22-year-old, who has been strongly linked with the Gunners, set himself a 48-hour deadline to decide on his future.
And the Ligue 1 centre-back, who is also a Napoli and Manchester United target, is thought to favour an Emirates switch.
FA Cup winners Arsenal are the top destination for the Brazilian starlet, despite Napoli matching the club’s £21.6million bid for the player.
And although United held late discussions in a battle to sign the Lille star, it appears Gabriel is set to join Arsenal who are strengthening their defence.
But it is thought the Arteta may have to sell a few of his existing playing personnel to fund the move.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 32, who joined Arsenal in 2018, has also been linked with an exit and move to Roma.
And this week Callum Chambers, 25, and Leeds target Rob Holding, 24, were reported to be among the Gunners defenders put up for sale.
Since Arteta’s appointment as Arsenal boss, Southampton’s Cedric Soares and Flamengo’s Pablo Mari have made their loan moves to the club permanent.
Gabriel impressed for the Ligue 1 side this season making 30 appearances across all competitions and netting once for the club.
And he played a key role in the club’s domestic campaign which saw them finish fourth in France’s top football division.
And David Luiz signed a new one-year deal with the Gunners.
Meanwhile, Arsenal are pushing for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to put pen to paper and agree to a new deal with the club.
The Gunners frontman was on fire for his side this term and was the Premier League’s second-highest scorer behind Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy.