Gabriel Jesus scouting report as Arsenal’s £45m signing scores in first minutes of debut

Gabriel Jesus took less than 90 seconds to open his account for Arsenal – and the Brazilian striker provided the spark Mikel Arteta’s side desperately needed to overhaul a two-goal deficit against FC Nurnberg in an enthralling friendly clash.

The Londoners kicked off their tour of Germany with a 5-3 win over the second-tier side, but they found themselves 2-0 down at the break. Gunners new boy Matt Turner failed to cover himself in glory when Johannes Geis long-range strike crashed in off the underside of the bar in the 24th minute, but the American had no chance just five minutes later when Kwadwo Duah doubled Nurnberg’s lead after an error from Albert Sambi Lokonga.

Unsurprisingly, Arsenal’s new £45million man was introduced at the break – and he made an immediate impact alongside Eddie Nketiah up front, netting from an acute angle with a venomous strike. Mohamed Elneny drew the Gunners level with a 30-yard piledriver before pressure from Jesus led to two quickfire own goals from the hosts. Jesus grabbed his second in the final minutes after Lukas Schleimer netted a third for Nurnberg.

Any concerns that Arsenal fans may have had over Jesus adapting back to life in a central role after he spent the majority of last year in a new wide attacking role for Manchester City were quickly quashed.

It took less than two minutes for Jesus to provide the clinical touch that had deserted Arsenal’s strikers last season. Nketiah did manage to find some form in the final weeks of the campaign to top the Gunners scoring charts with 10 goals – but those types of returns are nowhere near good enough for a team bidding to bag a Champions League berth.

Although it’s expected that Nketiah will be relegated to the bench in the wake of Jesus’ big-money arrival, Arteta and Gunners fans will have been enthused by some neat link-up play after the duo were deployed as an orthodox front two.

Join the debate! What did you make of Jesus’ performance against Nurnberg? Let us know here.

Jesus made a big impression in his first game for Arsenal

Jesus made a big impression in his first game for Arsenal
Alexander Hassenstein)

Jesus and Nketiah exchanged some slick passes on the edge of the box before the latter was put through to tee up the Gunners third goal, and the new tandem linked up well on numerous other occasions during the second-half; hinting that two could do damage together, rather than alone.

As encouraging as Jesus’ two-goal haul is, his work off the ball was just as important to Arsenal’s comeback. The Gunners had put in a limp first-half performance, but Jesus’ intense running and pressing in the early stages of the second-half set the tone for a vastly-improved performance.

Jesus is the undoubtedly the man that Arsenal are set to pin their goalscoring hopes on this term, and the 25-year-old looked a cut above the options Arteta was able to call upon last year.

Arsenal’s new man will come up against much sterner tests than Nurnberg in the coming months, the early signs are positive for the Gunners’ marquee summer signing – who is in the goals already.

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