Arsenal are in talks to sign Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus.
The Premier League champions don’t want to lose Jesus but understand his desire for regular first-team football. The arrivals of Erling Haaland and Julian Alvarez risk reducing his playing time at City.
Arsenal are one of several clubs interested in Jesus, who is reportedly valued by City at £50million.
The 25-year-old scored 13 goals last season and provided 12 assists in 28 starts in all competitions.
He arrived at the club from Brazilian side Palmeiras in 2016 and scored 95 times in 236 appearances.
Why Arsenal need a striker…
The Gunners’ most pressing need for next season is attack. When your best marksman has the same number of goals as Norwich, the last, you know there is a problem.
The problem is not to create opportunities, the problem is to seize them. Arsenal ranked fourth in shots, shots on target and expected goals (xG) this season, but 11th in shot conversion.
This disparity places Arteta’s side 15th in xG differential, which measures the difference between goals and xG. A low xG differential suggests you are missing high quality chances – only Brighton, Leeds and the three relegated teams had a lower xG differential than Arsenal.
The main culprit in this regard is Alexandre Lacazette, who scored just two free goals on 46 shots and a 6.84 xG return. Only Brentford’s Bryan Mbuemo has underperformed his xG by a bigger margin this season.
Analysis: Will Jesus thrive away from Man City?
Jesus was touted as Sergio Aguero’s successor in 2017 but will leave the Etihad having never made more than 22 starts for Pep Guardiola’s side in a Premier League campaign. Over the past five seasons, he has played just 51% of City’s available minutes.
Not that his goalscoring record is anything to sniff at. Jesus averaged a goal every 160 minutes in the Premier League. Of the players who have scored at least 15 times in the competition since then, only six boast a higher strike rate.
That’s partly down to a lack of consistent starting opportunities – more than a third of Jesus’ 159 Premier League appearances have come as a substitute – but it’s also a matter of finishing.
Jesus excels in many ways, from his off-the-ball movement and versatility to his pressing, but he’s not always so reliable when it comes to converting chances.
Indeed, while his goalscoring record is by no means poor, the underlying data suggests significant gaps in front of goal.
Since his City debut five-and-a-half years ago, Jesus has the second-largest negative gap between actual goals scored and expected goals in the Premier League, behind only Crystal Palace striker Christian Benteke.
Arsenal close to deal for Vieira
Arsenal are about to agree an agreement to sign Port Midfielder Fabio Viera for a fee that could be worth £35m, including add-ons.
The deal is expected to be completed once he passes a medical and finalizes personal terms – with some reports suggesting he will travel to London as soon as possible.
The 22-year-old scored six league goals in 15 starts for Porto last season. He scored 13 goals in 21 appearances for Portugal U21.
What can Arsenal expect from Vieira?
Sky Sports News reporter Mark McAdam talks about Fabio Vieira:
“He is highly rated and this can be seen as a really exciting move in the transfer window for Mikel Arteta.
“He’s 22, technically very gifted so he fits into the mold of Arsenal players. He has great movement, very graceful on the ball, he wants to get into it.
“He really plays as a number eight, he’s played away as a winger or as a false nine, but playing deep in midfield is where he’s at his best.
“He was described to me by a Premier League recruitment scout as a lovely footballer, someone with a brilliant eye and someone I would love to have on your side.
“Six goals in 15 starts for Porto this season, 13 goals in 21 games for Portugal Under-21s – that tells you everything you need to know about the type of midfielder he is.”
Arsenal schedule: Gunners start at Palace
Arsenal will start their 2022/23 Premier League campaign at Crystal Palace on August 5, live on Friday Night Football.
Mikel Arteta’s side, who finished fifth in the Premier League last season, next host Leicester City on August 13 before traveling to newly-promoted Bournemouth on August 20.
The Gunners’ first derby in North London will take place at the Emirates Stadium on October 1, while the second leg at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium will take place at the start of the new year on January 14.
Arsenal’s last game before the season’s break for the Winter World Cup will be away to Wolves on the weekend of 12/13 November. They will then return to action on Boxing Day, entertaining West Ham.
The final day of the Premier League season is May 28, when Arsenal will close out their home campaign against Wolves.