The 23-year-old Egyptian midfielder Mohammed Elneny already reached London on Wednesday morning to finalise the formalities of a four-and-a-half year contract at Arsenal worth £7.4m.
He also has undergone and completed the medical and it was suggested that the much anticipated deal will be finalised in time for the Egypt international to feature at the Britannia Stadium this weekend.
Elneny will certainly provide much needed strength and depth in Arsenal midfield following a number of injuries in that position.
Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla are not expected to return until the end of February after both the players picked up knee injuries. Jack Wilshere has been sidelined since the start of this season with a hairline fracture and his attempts to get back in full training mode have been postponed by the doctors.
At his press conference on Monday ahead of Wednesday’s away fixture against Liverpool, Arsene Wenger insisted he was positive Arsenal would finally sign the Egyptian this week.
Wenger revealed: “I expect Mohamed yes, we are positive that this week it can happen.
“The situation should be sorted out. There are a lot of work permit problems and special paperwork to do, (the) visa, so we hope we can finalise it this week. As long as it is not definitely signed, you have to be cautious, but I am optimistic about the case.”
the only thing Arsenal was concerned was how to get the Egyptian footballer a work permit because Egypt’s current ranking which is 57 in FIFA world rankings is not high enough to guarantee a work permit for Elneny. It was earlier rumoured that Arsenal’s application for a work permit for Elnenny failed initially but later Guardian reported Wenger has been successful to get a special talent visa for him from the British home office.
Elneny, who has bagged 39 international caps for his country, started his career in Egypt with El Mokawloon before joining Basel in 2013.
He has guided Basel to win three successive league titles in Switzerland along with helping them reach the Europa League semi-finals during his debut season at the club.