Pep Guardiola describes Arsenal star Gabriel Jesus as the ‘best striker/defender’ he’s ever worked with

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Gabriel Jesus has impressed for Arsenal so far  (Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
Gabriel Jesus has impressed for Arsenal so far (Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Pep Guardiola has hailed Gabriel Jesus as the best “striker/defender” he has worked with.

After winning four Premier League titles with Manchester City, the Brazilian was sold to Arsenal this summer in a £45m deal to give Mikel Arteta the striker he so desperately needed.

While all the usual caveats must be applied when it comes to analysing preseason games, the 25-year-old has enjoyed life with his new club so far.

Four goals in as many games certainly point to a successful bedding in process, although the true tests as clearly to come.

Prior to his signing, much had been made about Jesus’ best position. Brought to the Etihad Stadium as a striker in 2017, the forward was largely deployed on the right of a front three for the last two seasons of his City career, as Guardiola adopted a formation without a fixed-point centre-forward.

Still, Jesus remained a huge part of City’s strongest line-up. Last season, he played in all three games against Liverpool as well as both Champions League semi-finals against Real Madrid.

Speaking to City’s official website and reflecting on the exits of Jesus, Raheem Sterling and Oleksandr Zinchenko, Guardiola said: “He’s the best striker/defender I ever found to play in the three positions. [He] can play five minutes, he plays the best five minutes of his life. He plays 90 minutes, he will give everything.

“I had the feeling that in most cases we will miss him, but it’s football, it’s life, and the successes, all of them, will be our happiness.”

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