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Report: Arsenal Man’s Struggle with New Role

Gabriel Jesus: From Central Striker to a Winger’s Predicament

The Evolution of Jesus

There’s something undeniably poetic about the footballer’s journey, and Gabriel Jesus embodies that. From gracing the central forward position at Palmeiras to navigating the wide expanses of Premier League pitches, Jesus’s career has seen more turns than a Beethoven sonata.

A glimpse at his recent games for Arsenal reveals a preference shift – or perhaps more aptly, a role imposition. Against the likes of Tottenham and Bournemouth, he’s been situated on the left, only to dance with the right wing during Arsenal’s tantalising tango against his ex-club, Manchester City.

From Past Glories to Present Grievances

It wasn’t always this way. Those who’ve followed Jesus since his Palmeiras days will remember the audacious number nine who painted the pitch with flair. England seemed to curtail that vision a tad. Since his transition to English soil in January 2017, his role swayed from centre to side.

Perhaps, the most poignantly telling moment was during a Champions League face-off with Paris Saint-Germain in November 2021. With Pep Guardiola’s decision to opt for Oleksandr Zinchenko as a false nine, Jesus had to grapple with profound emotions. “I skipped the pre-match meal because I was in my room crying and on the phone to my mother,” he revealed. Yet, football, being the unpredictable sport it is, saw him coming off the bench to score and assist, ensuring a thrilling 2-1 victory. But, the reverberations were evident as he wasn’t listed for the next fixture against RB Leipzig.

The Arsenal Ambition

It was supposed to be a fresh start for Jesus with Arsenal. At a neat £45m, 2022 saw him donning the red and white, with promises of resuming his favoured ‘number nine’ role. “When I chose to transfer from City to Arsenal, Edu [Gaspar] and [Mikel] Arteta spoke to me, and I made it clear that I would like to play as a ‘nine’,” he voiced during an international duty stint. The intention was clear, but so are life’s curveballs. With the absence of stalwarts like Gabriel Martinelli, Bukayo Saka, and Leandro Trossard, Jesus has had to embrace versatility, with Eddie Nketiah seizing the central spotlight.

Jesus muses, “This season has been different, we have had injuries, and in the last three games, I played on the wing. For a while, I thought about saying that I want to play as a nine, but I’m here to help the team. I am blessed by God to have this talent and the versatility to play in the three front positions. I prefer not to choose.”

In the end, it’s a tale of talent, versatility, and sacrifice. Gabriel Jesus, whether a central figure or a wide man, is undeniably an emblem of dedication.

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