Written By Jacobs Dunga
The former player has advised the club to pounce on the wantaway Manchester City striker if they’re to stand any chance of making the top four.
Arsenal have started their summer recruitment ahead of the 2022/2023 Premier League season.
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The Gunners narrowly missed out on the top four last season as city rivals Tottenham Hotspur beat them to the last qualifying spot for the Champions League.
To avoid a repeat of that, Arsenal have recruited Brazilian talent Marquinhos and Portuguese rising star Fabio Vieira from Porto.
The club saw Pierre Emerick Aubameyang leave the club in the January transfer window while Alexandre Lacazette has since left for Olympique Lyonnais after the expiration of his contract.
Mikel Arteta is left with only Edward Nketiah in the striking department and Paul Merson believes the club have to get into the market should they want to stand any chance of competing for the top four.
Gabriel Jesus is one name that has been linked with the Gunners and Merson has sounded it to Arsenal to make his signing a priority.
“Arsenal must get Gabriel Jesus if they are serious about getting back into the top four. They have got to get him. It’s that simple.
“Everything goes out of the window if they don’t. It doesn’t matter what else they do. All they’ve got right now up front is Eddie Nketiah. And no disrespect but Nketiah won’t get you into the top four. Absolutely no chance. That’s a fact.
Writing in his Daily Star column, he continued: “So they need Jesus. They don’t need young players with potential like Fabio Vieira. They need experience. And Jesus has plenty of that. If they don’t get him they are sitting there with one centre forward, and let’s be honest if not for Aubameyang and Lacazette’s contract situations, he wouldn’t be there. They need to sort the Jesus signing out very quickly. I think he is good enough to transform Arsenal. He doesn’t get the credit he deserves.
“Yes, he does miss chances but he never goes hiding and hes a centre forward who is desperate to score goals. He has that hunger and a little bit of a selfish streak and you need that. Arsenal have got to start taking more points off the top teams. Too many times they get beaten too easily by the top teams. It’s just getting that consistency because it’s not been there and that’s their big weakness. But I don’t think they’ve got the personnel.
He insists Nketiah cannot be compared head and shoulders to strikers of some of the lower teams in the league and yet their clubs are still not up there stressing further that Arsenal would need a big game player to stand any chance.
“While you got a young team there they are going to be up and down. It will be the same again this season unless they bring in some more experience. That’s where players like Jesus come in. If they get Jesus I think Arsenal fans can start to get excited. But if they don’t, they are going to be so far short.
“Nketiah can’t be spearheading your Champions League push. He’s not getting in ahead of Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison at Everton and they almost got relegated. He’s not getting in at Fulham ahead of Aleksandr Mitrovic and they’ve only just been promoted. I’m not having a go at him but he’s not getting you top four. Put Jesus in there and he’s played in the big, big matches. Pep Guardiola has trusted him in big games and if Guardiola trusts you, you know you’ve got a good signing.”
Gabriel Martinelli and William Saliba have both handed Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta a transfer boost as the pair are now qualified as homegrown players.
Both players who joined Arsenal in the summer of 2019 have successfully been registered in three different seasons before their 21st birthdays which automatically qualifies them as grown players in the division.
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This now opens up space for the club to sign other targets without the lure of filling that quota with Nicolas Pepe and Nuno Tavares both expected to leave to free up some more spaces for new arrivals.
The Premier League rules mandate that at least eight homegrown players must be in the squad of 25 that’s to be submitted for the season and with arsenal now sorted in that regards, other priorities can now be focused on.
Martinelli was recently handed the number 11 jersey ahead of the new season while William Saliba has been tipped to finally make his breakthrough at the Emirates following his successful loan spell at Olympique Marseille where he won the Ligue 1 young player of the season award.
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