Gabriel Jesus was the star of the show as he led Arsenal to a 4-2 win over Leicester on his home debut.
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The Emirates Stadium has seen many great strikers lead the line for the Gunners over the years and today seems like it has seen the beginnings of yet another delightful career in red and white.
Jesus was removed in the 84th minute to a standing ovation, with the capacity crowd having witnessed a devastating display from their new leading man as he transitioned from Man City’s supporting player to Arsenal’s main man.
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Jesus looked bright from the off, making driving runs in behind the Leicester back-line in the same way that precious few Arsenal forwards have done over the last few years. This was a “pre-ting” Aubameyang level of movement.
Not to say that Jesus is necessarily in Aubameyang’s class, except, well, maybe he is? Years spent as a back-up to Sergio Aguero (who definitely was a cut above where Jesus is) have made people overlook just how good Gabriel Jesus actually is.
The Brazilian tormented Leicester with his movement and use of the ball. He scored twice but it could have honestly been four or five goals for Jesus, so sharp and lean was his movement and use of the ball.
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In the end he scored twice and assisted twice, having a direct hand in every single Arsenal goal.
His first goal was perhaps the most important, not just because it broke the game open but because it showed the extra layer of class he brings to the front-line. An Aubameyang-style out-of-nothing finish from the Brazilian as he looped the ball over defenders and goalkeeper Danny Ward, planting it into the top corner.
This was after creating the whole chance with a deadly run in behind and a nice bit of control. Something he did again for the second goal, making a back-post run to get a simple finish as a set-piece found its way to him to double Arsenal’s lead.
Only two players have been directly involved in 4+ goals in a Premier League game for Arsenal since the start of the 2016/17 season:
◉ Alexis Sanchez vs. West Ham (2016)
◉ Gabriel Jesus vs. Leicester (2022)
What a home Premier League debut. ? pic.twitter.com/wE0gQzeoU7
— Squawka (@Squawka) August 13, 2022
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After that, Jesus missed a host of chances for his hat-trick. The anxiety he shed in giving the Gunners the lead was now all over him as he tried to mark his home debut with a historic treble.
However he still managed to turn provider, with his assists twice helping Arsenal shake off belated comeback efforts from Leicester. First knocking down a back-post cross to allow Granit Xhaka to make it 3-1, then his lovely run and pass putting Gabriel Martinelli in a perfect position to make it 4-2 and seal the game with his third goal in his last three Premier League games.
Gabriel Jesus' game by numbers vs. Leicester:
15 touches in opp. box
8 duels won
3 shots on target
3 big chances
3 chances created
Incredible! ? pic.twitter.com/tjh401gyk7
— Squawka (@Squawka) August 13, 2022
After today Gabriel Jesus sits joint-top of the golden boot rankings and top by himself of the assist charts. There’s obviously a long way to go but early signs point to Arsenal finally picking up the line-leading no. 9 they have needed since Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s form fell off following the signing of “the ting.”
Gabriel Jesus needs no ting to motivate him, he is a proven title winner and brings that same energy and drive to Arsenal. Gabriel Jesus wants to lead the Gunners to greatness and Mikel Arteta appears to be putting him in the perfect position to do just that.