Declan Rice's Arsenal comments speak volumes as Mikel Arteta faces transfer dilemma

Gabriel Jesus has been linked with a move away from Arsenal (Image: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has a significant transfer decision to make regarding Gabriel Jesus this summer. The Arsenal star struggled with injuries and poor form this season and his performances have prompted questions about whether the club will opt to bring in a direct replacement as a result.

Jesus made 27 league appearances for the Gunners this season but only found the back of the net on four occasions, with Kai Havertz managing to assert himself as the club’s first-choice striker for the campaign.

Arteta therefore limited Jesus’ minutes to second-half cameos and stints on the wing, which has led to some suggestions that the versatile forward could be moved on this summer to raise funds for a top-quality replacement.

Numerous striker options have been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium over the past few weeks, including RB Leipzig star Benjamin Sesko and Ajax’s Brian Brobbey. However, Declan Rice has suggested that Arteta and Arsenal don’t need to bring anyone in.

Asked about who he believes stands out the most in training, the England international told Chinese website Iqiyi: “I think it’s either Gabriel Jesus or Odegaard, one of those two.

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Declan Rice has hailed Arsenal team-mate Gabriel Jesus (Image: Getty)

“They are just so good at football. Probably Jesus, but Odegaard is up there as well. They’re both just so good. The stuff they do with the ball is unbelievable. To see it, it’s amazing!”

Jesus will be pleased to learn of the high praise from his teammate, though it ultimately may not be enough to ensure that he remains on the Arsenal books heading into the 2024/25 campaign. Saudi Pro League sides have already been linked with a move for the former Manchester City star, who have not been deterred by his ‘not the best’ season, as he admitted.

Mikel Arteta must make a decision on Jesus’ future (Image: Getty)


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Writing on X, formerly known as Twitter, after Arsenal were forced to settle for second place in the Premier League, Jesus wrote: “Not the best season for me personally, things didn’t go as I planned, but I couldn’t be prouder of the team I’m part of.

“This group is amazing and we’re showing that season after season. Now it’s time to rest and prepare to be healthier next season. We’ll be back stronger and ready for it! Let’s go, Gunners!”