Mikel Arteta told to sell four Arsenal defenders and sign Gabriel Magalhaes

Mikel Arteta has been called on to sell four of his centre-backs and sign Lille defender Gabriel Magalhaes this summer by Arsenal icon Charlie Nicholas.

The Gunners are heavily linked with 22-year-old Brazilian Gabriel and have reportedly fended off competition from Manchester United, Everton and Napoli in their pursuit.

Should Gabriel arrive at the Emirates, it would mean Arteta would have a disproportionately high number of centre-backs to pick from.

William Saliba is also arriving in north London after his £30million signing last summer and subsequent loan back to Saint-Etienne.

Elsewhere, regular starter David Luiz is backed up by Pablo Mari, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers and Rob Holding.

Though Arteta appears to face a conundrum over his options in central defence, Nicholas believes there is a simple solution over who to buy and sell.

"I don't think it's overly difficult for me to say who should go," Nicholas told Sky Sports News . "Gabriel must come in – would he be a good signing? Yes.

"We let Saliba stay at Saint-Etienne last season which was a ridiculous decision. People said 'He'll be naive and he'll struggle in the English Premier League' and you go: 'Are these guys already here not struggling in the Premier League? They're not doing it'. But they made that decision.

Which centre-backs would you hold on to if you were Arteta? Have your say here.

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"So we welcome Saliba and if we can get Gabriel I think suddenly we've got a bit of pace and a bit of power there.

"Luiz was signed on a one-year contract as a squad player and maybe to play in a back three occasionally.

"But Mustafi will be sold. He's injured just now but he will be sold, he has to go. Sokratis I think will say: 'At my stage, I have to go'.

"Rob Holding, nothing against him, I don't think Arsenal's helped him. It was the wrong move at the wrong time for the lad. I think if the right offer comes in, he'll go.

"And obviously Calum Chambers, who has been in and out of the club unbelievable amounts of times, will have to go for his own sake, rather than his long-term future at Arsenal – it doesn't exist.

"So they'll be four out, you get the money in, you replace it."

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