It seems pretty evident that Arsene Wenger and whoever else is involved in getting the transfer deals done for Arsenal are confident that the club will be issued with a work permit for Gabriel Paulista, as we have already agreed the terms of the deal and will apparently complete the transfer of the 24-year old once he has undergone a medial with Arsenal later today.
However, I have a note of caution to add, because I seem to recall that the Gunners fully expected to be given a work permit for Joel Campbell when we signed him from the Costa Rican club Deportive Saprissa back in August of 2011. Campbell was just 19-years old back then and had already started to earn caps and had scored two goals for Costa Rica at senior level, which is more than can be said of Paulista.
The story goes that Arsenal were led to believe that Campbell would be granted permission to play in England even though he did not strictly fulfil all the official requirements. Eight days later we were given the bad news that he would not get his permit and in fact did not get it for another two years, which was clearly ridiculous.
I have a horrible feeling that the FA could do the same thing to Arsenal again, even though the work permit rules are due to be eased in the summer and any player costing £10 million or more will automatically get permission to play in the Premier League.
It would seem unfair, petty and churlish for the powers that be to deny Paulista a permit to play for Arsenal this season, but when has that ever stopped them in the past?