14 August 2022

Granit Xhaka: Gabriel Jesus goalscoring form at perfect time for Arsenal

14 August 2022

Gabriel Jesus’ first goals as a Gunner came at exactly the right time, believes Granit Xhaka.

Jesus made his competitive debut for Arsenal at Crystal Palace to start the season, but opened his account with a brace in their 4-2 home win over Leicester on Saturday.

To net so early on, acknowledged his Swiss team-mate, was the Brazilian’s ideal introduction to the Emirates Stadium.

“Not only his first goal, but [Jesus’] performance was unbelievable,” Xhaka, who picked up the assist and scored a second-half goal of his own, told the Arsenal website.

“Two goals, two assists, the work he does for the team is unbelievable and we’re more than happy. He’s scoring now as well, he’s helping us day-by-day and I’m more than happy for him because I think it’s very important to score at home.”

Jesus’ admirers, however, were not just limited to his dressing room and the sea of Arsenal supporters who packed the stands.

Even Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers could not help but admire what Mikel Arteta accomplished over the summer, particularly bringing the 25-year-old striker over from Manchester City.

He said: “Anyone can see, when you bring in a world-class player, it’s not just what he brings to the team, it’s what a new signing gives to everyone else.

“The confidence, then [Oleksandr] Zinchenko, they’re coming out of winning environments, out of a real mentality where they look after themselves every day, they train like dogs to be the best they can be and that then spills onto the rest of the team.

Leicester boss Rodgers was impressed by all of Mikel Arteta’s new recruits and also singled out Oleksandr Zinchenko (Mike Egerton/PA) (PA Wire)

“I think the young guy, [William] Saliba has come in and he’ll do very, very well. I haven’t seen him since he was 17-18.

“So bringing three starters into your team can make a big difference. Especially if you bring in quality it galvanises the others.

“That’s the nature of football. You’re always looking to recycle your squad, bring in and improve the squad and the team which refreshes it, and then it keeps going.”

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