Mikel Arteta has been impressed with the way new signings Gabriel Magalhaes and Willian have adapted ahead of their possible Arsenal debuts against Fulham on Saturday.
The Gunners will begin their new Premier League campaign at Craven Cottage against Scott Parker’s newly promoted side amid something of a defensive injury crisis.
Five of Arsenal’s senior central defenders have been ruled out of the London derby, which could force Arteta to select his £27million recruit from Lille at the earliest possible opportunity.
Arsenal enjoyed success during last season’s run-in operating with a 3-4-3 formation, but with Gabriel, fellow new boy William Saliba and Rob Holding the only three fit recognised central defenders available, the Arsenal manager could be forced into switching systems.
At the other end of the pitch, Gabriel’s compatriot Willian is likely to make his first competitive Arsenal appearance since his summer switch from Chelsea and Arteta believes both will prove to be hugely influential throughout the course of the new season.