Arsenal eyeing January move for one of two La Liga defenders

Arsenal have begun talks to sign Villareal defender Gabriel Paulista, but are also keeping an eye on Valencia’s Nicolas Otamendi, Mirror reports.

Paulista has revealed that the Gunners are looking to sign him this January, and that he is open to making a switch to the English Premier League.

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Villareal have been monitoring the situation of Arsenal forward Joel Campbell, and could therefore use Paulista as makeweight in a potential swap deal.

But the Gunners could have trouble signing the Brazilian ace, who does not yet have an EU passport and could find it difficult to obtain a work permit.

“The subject is being discussed by my agent and the club,” Paulista said.

“If I go to Arsenal it will be excellent. But if it’s not finalised then I am relaxed. I am focused on my work here.”

If getting hold of a work-permit is too difficult, then Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is preparing to find an adequate alternative to Paulista.

One of the names mentioned recently is West Ham’s Winston Reid, who is out of contract this summer but will be available for £7million this January.

But Wenger is also keen on Valencia star Otamendi, and will hope that the Argentine will choose the Gunners over a move to the likes of Manchester United and Valencia.