Footy Times

Gabriel Jesus Ends Arsenal’s Striker Hunt

"He puts the ball in the net, that's priority number one".

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Arsenal have reached a verbal agreement for their first-choice striker target Gabriel Jesus with Manchester City. The transfer fee is approximately £45M on a five-year deal. The club is now working on personal terms agreements with the player and his representatives.

Both Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur were targeting the Selecao star but it seems Arteta convinced his former adherent.

The 25-year-old will be Arsenal’s long-term replacement for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and their fourth signing of the summer following Matt Turner from the MLS side New England Revolution, Brazilian winger Marquinhos from Sao Paulo and the Portuguese playmaker Fabio Vieira from FC Porto.

The renowned number nine started his career in Palmeiras and moved to City at the age of 19. Being part of City’s golden era under Pep Guardiola, he swept four Premier League titles, the league cups and the FA cup in five years. He contributed 58 goals and 29 assists from 159 appearances for Citizens in Premier League.

19-year-old Jesus lifting the Brazilian Series A trophy with Palmeiras. Photo by Friedemann Vogel/Getty Images

The Brazilian forward has been closely linked with Arsenal for nearly six months. The probability increased amid the arrival of Erling Haaland and Julian Alvarez, which obliged Jesus to find more game time. Jesus turned down Spurs’ offer even though they could provide Champions League football this season, that Arsenal can’t, as he is not keen on being a rotation option behind Harry Kane. Reuniting with Arteta, who would regularly offer individual coaching and advice when serving as assistant to Pep Guardiola, Jesus will be the star man of Arsenal for the following seasons.

The Gunners were in desperate need of attacking reinforcements since the departure of Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, their former skipper, to FC Barcelona during the January transfer and the return of Alexandre Lacazette to his former club Olympique Lyonnais this summer. The arrival of Jesus will strengthen the striking department incorporating Eddie Nketiah, who signed a contract extension last week, Nicholas Pepe and Folarin Balogun.

Arsenal are expanding the depth and quality of the squad in order to reconquer titles and secure Champions League football by following up last year’s spending spree. Jesus could bring firepower which Arsenal is in desperate need of. As Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta said, “He puts the ball in the net, that’s priority number one”.

Leeds United’s Brazilian striker Raphinha and Ajax and Argentina left-back Lisandro Martinez remain Arsenal’s top priority.

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