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Arsenal have confirmed the £45million signing of Manchester City forward Gabriel Jesus, with the Brazilian agreeing a five-year contract at the Emirates.
The Gunners announced the move on Monday morning, with a video welcoming the Brazil international to north London.
Jesus becomes Mikel Arteta’s fourth signing of the summer after landing Fabio Vieira, Marquinhos and Matt Turner, but the Brazil international is the Gunners’ marquee name and the man who fans will hope can fire them to the top four.
The 25-year-old, who has taken the No 9 shirt, had interest from both Chelsea and Tottenham, but has opted to join Arsenal, who were in desperate need of a new forward after Alexandre Lacazette left on a free transfer to return to Lyon.
Arsenal have clinched the £45m signing of Manchester City forward Gabriel Jesus
The Brazil international has swapped life at champions Man City for a switch to north London
Mikel Arteta has finally got his man after adding a much-needed quality forward to his squad
Speaking on his move, Jesus told the club’s official website: ‘I followed Arsenal when I was young because of [Thierry] Henry. Obviously I didn’t follow too many European teams but when I saw some of the players that played here, I was like “wow, this club is big”.
‘When I played against Arsenal I was looking at the Emirates and it was a very good stadium, so I’m very excited to play here.
Jesus said he was very happy to be signing for a ‘big club’ on the completion of his move
‘I’m so happy to sign for this big club. Since day one when I knew I could come to play for Arsenal, I was happy. I know the staff, I know some players, the Brazilian ones.
‘I know there are a lot of top players. They are young and I’m still young as well, so I am so happy to be here to help. I come to help, to learn as well and to try to do my best.’
Sportsmail understands City will use the funds to seal a move for Leeds midfielder Kalvin Phillips. City have agreed a deal of £42million plus add-ons for the England international.
Jesus will link up with Eddie Nketiah – who has just signed a new long term contract and taken the No 14 shit – and fellow Brazilian Gabriel Martinelli.
The move also reunites him with Arteta, who worked with him while he was assistant manager to Pep Guardiola at Man City, and the Spaniard is thought to have held Jesus in high regard during his time at the Etihad.
Speaking on his relationship with his new head coach, the Brazilian added: ‘We spoke a couple of times about the club, the players, the project and the future. I believe 100 per cent in Mikel. I had a very good time with him before, he’s a very good guy and a very good coach as well.
‘He helped me a lot [at Manchester City]. We would always stick together after the training sessions and do some finishing or something. He’s a very intelligent guy and was an amazing player, so if he knows something he can teach me or the young players.’
Jesus netted 95 goals in total from 236 appearances during his six seasons at City, though he was never able to become a clear-cut favourite under Guardiola.
Jesus has netted 95 times since joining City and will hope to become Arsenal’s main man
The move reunites Jesus with Arteta, who worked with the Brazilian when he was City assistant
Jesus will also wear the No 9, which has been vacated by French stiker Alexandre Lacazette
He was seen as the heir to Sergio Aguero when he joined City for around £27m from Palmeiras in 2016 – and while he has played his part with some crucial goals over the years – he has never grabbed a first choice spot by the scruff of the neck.
Aguero spent much of the 2020-21 campaign out injured, but Jesus still only managed to start 22 Premier League games out of 38.
In the last campaign – which saw Aguero leave the club to leave Jesus as their only senior forward – he started one fewer game with 21, with Guardiola often opting to start with Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez and Bernardo Silva as his main attackers.
Arsenal are ushering in a new era of forwards after the exits of Alexandre Lacazette (left) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (right), who both departed on free transfers
Arsenal are still reeling from their failure to land a top four spot after being pipped to the final coveted place by London rivals Arsenal, and their lack of a reliable goalscorer was certainly felt as their only forwards Nketiah and Lacazette netted just nine goals between them in the league.
Aubameyang fired in just four goals in the Premier League before he infamously fell out with Arteta over a third disciplinary breach during his time at the Emirates and the Gabon forward was subsequently frozen out.
He later sealed a free transfer to Barcelona in January and went on to score 11 times in 17 LaLiga matches – a marked improvement from his Arsenal struggles.
This is a big year for Jesus – who will hope to impress and become first choice for Brazil at the upcoming World Cup in Qatar
Arsenal have already captured FC Porto playmaker Fabio Vieira, who made 15 assists last term
The signing of Jesus will be a welcome boost to Arteta then, and he’ll hope his quality up front can make Arsenal one of the leading contenders to secure Champions League football and challenge for honours.
Jesus’ arrival will be complemented by the signing of midfield playmaker Vieira, who has come in from FC Porto – with the Gunners already significantly ramping up their attacking options.
Vieira scored seven times last season and provided 15 assists in the Portuguese league – so there is already optimism he can give Arsenal a creative spark and link up well with Jesus.
Jesus – who is famous for his telephone call celebration – has picked up 56 caps for Brazil, scoring 19 times and will be eager to start the season in electric form to boost his hopes of starting at the World Cup in Qatar this November.