Mohamed Elneny.

Arsene Wenger expects Arsenal to sign Mohamed Elneny soon

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Arsene Wenger has finally confirmed what many Arsenal fans have long expected; Mohamed Elneny is about to join the club from FC Basel, albeit slightly later than originally expected.

Indeed, a number of reports had claimed that the Egyptian international may well be in the squad to face Sunderland in Saturday's FA Cup third-round tie.

But while Wenger confirmed he expects the deal to go through, he revealed that complications surrounding the deal mean it is still two or three days away from completion.


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He told reporters: "Its complicated a little bit. We work hard on it and I hope in the next two or three days we get to the end of it."

Those complications are believed to be born out of the work permit process. As an Egyptian, Elneny is a non-EU worker and would require clearance from the Home Office before he can play for Arsenal.

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Arsenal have already agreed on a £7million fee with his Swiss club and a long-term contract has been signed. However, work permit rules, which were reformed at the start of the current season, mean the Gunners have had to face a lengthy appeal process.


The problem

The 23-year-old has played every competitive international for Egypt across the last two years, but because they are currently ranked outside of the top 50 nations in the FIFA rankings, his ever-presence for his country counts for less.

Arsenal would not have put this much effort into the deal if they did not think they could obtain the work permit and there are not expected to be any problems. However, it does mean Elneny will have to wait slightly longer to make his Gunners debut.


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