News from Brazil on Arsenal’s deal to sign Pablo Mari

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Arsenal are close to sealing a deal for Flamengo centre-back Pablo Mari, according to reports.

The defender is reportedly closing in on a loan move, after travelling to London over the weekend to undergo a medical.

It is understood Mari would join the Gunners until the end of the season, with Mikel Arteta’s side having the option to make the deal permanent in the summer.

Mari was previously on the books of Manchester City after signing a deal in 2016, but never made an appearance for Pep Guardiola’s side.

The Spaniard was sent out on loan to Girona, NAC Breda and Deportivo La Coruna, before joining Flamengo on a permanent deal last summer.

Mari helped Flamengo win Brazil’s Serie A title, and recently impressed in the Fifa World Club Cup final against Liverpool.

And on social media, an Arsenal supporter posted a thread with a Brazilian football expert summarising Mari’s performances in Brazil, and what Gunners fans can expect.

Within the Twitter thread by @cdavidson_afc, Tiago Cordeiro said: “He has a great pass for a defender, last year I remember a few goals that started from him.

“Very tall, but agile despite this. He isn’t the fastest, but he has a long stride. Anticipates very well and marks his opponents very well too.

“He was one thing when he left Europe, he then became another. The work with Jorge Jesus [Flamengo manager] has made him grow a lot.

“When he first arrived he was kind of clumsy, but he has evolved a lot quite quickly.

“He is an ideal defender for a team that plays with pressure and a high line.”

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