Premier League • England

Paul Merson explains why superstar a ‘problem’ for Arsenal; names player who would waltz into Man City side

Gabriel Jesus Thomas Partey Arsenal 2023 TEAMtalk1

Paul Merson feels the return to fitness of Gabriel Jesus could cause Mikel Arteta a headache and believes one Gunner is as good as it gets.

Jesus, 25, was a big-money summer signing from Manchester City. And the £45m that the Gunners spent looked a superb investment with his early-season form. The Brazil international bagged five top-flight goals by October 1 and set Arsenal on their way to a title challenge.

That still remains, as the north Londoners sit five points clear of City at the top of the standings. However, the former Palmeiras ace picked up a knee injury at the World Cup in Qatar.

He had played no part in the north Londoners progress since the turn of the year until Sunday’s trip to Fulham.

The South American came on for the final 13 minutes of the match as Arsenal won 3-0.

In his absence, the Emirates outfit have managed to stave off the threat of City and Manchester United.

They did suffer a three-match winless run, with defeat to Everton and Pep Guardiola’s men. But five straight Premier League victories has seen them put daylight between themselves and the champions.

READ MORE: Arsenal slap ‘crazy’ valuation on lethal forward who’s causing ‘havoc’, as two Euro giants prey on Arteta indecision

They now have Jesus as an option. But Merson believes it leaves the Spanish tactician with a selection headache.

“Gabriel Jesus coming back is a bit of a problem for Arsenal because the lad will want to play – he didn’t sign to be a bit-part player like he was at Man City,” he told Sky Sports.

“It will cause problems in time but at the moment it’s like another signing.”

Merson hails ‘unbelievable’ Arsenal signing

Arsenal signed Leandro Trossard from Brighton during the January transfer window.

The Belgium interantional had shone for the Seagulls since his arrival at the Amex in June 2019. He made it clear he wanted to leave Brighton and Arsenal pounced.

The former Genk star has slotted into the Gunners forward line and has already opened his account for the side.

Merson feels Arteta got a bargain and is convinced that the winger would be at home in any top-flight team.

“Leandro Trossard could play for Man City,” he added. “It’s an unbelievable signing for £27m.

“When his agent said to him he was going to Arsenal for that fee he must have thought, ‘Is that all I’m worth?”

“The lad could go in the Man City team on Tuesday and you wouldn’t know any different, he’s that good.

“But Arsenal play like Man City, if you put them in a light blue kit you would think they are. You don’t get bigger compliments than that.”

Despite Arsenal’s delight at securing Trossard, this article lists five reasons why they won’t win the Premier League.

Arsenal’s next task is to progress in the Europa League. They take on Sporting at home on Thursday, with the tie poised nicely at 2-2 after the first leg.

Attention will then return to domestic matters, with a London derby against Crystal Palace pencilled in for Sunday afternoon.

READ MORE: Arsenal given glorious chance to sign Real Madrid man who doesn’t even speak to Ancelotti, as decision on future made