Jesus and Saliba shine but the Arsenal duo may bring Arteta back to the drawing board

Gabriel Jesus and William Saliba were excellent, but the Arsenal duo were cause for concern for Mikel Arteta at Selhurst Park.

Jesus not only prospered – As most of us expected – But he took over as the main man in Arsenal’s attack. Gabriel Martinelli and Bucayo Saka surrounded the new signing but seemed unnecessary to the proceedings, particularly early on, as Jesus caught every eye by falling deep, spinning back and dazzling with his dribbling.

Just three minutes later he showed his strength, quick feet and determination as he shrugged off one Crystal Palace player, overpowering the next and ignoring a third before Martinelli missed out on the very impressive opportunity his new teammate had put in for him. .

Jesus’ ability to travel with the ball may be the biggest difference between life at Arsenal compared to Manchester City. While Pep Guardiola asks his attacking players to pass and move to open up opposition teams, this first display of Jesus under Mikel Arteta suggests that the Brazilian will be licensed to make something from nothing, if he so desires.

But the old and very useful tropes of his time at City, which Guardiola dug up over six years, have remained evident in Arsenal’s salmon. His movement outside of possession was excellent, often overlooked by his teammates, and his desire to press high and recover the ball likely ended with a goal where Martin Odegaard failed to pull the trigger in the penalty area.

His new teammate Oleksandr Zinchenko played in his usual left-back midfield style, while also playing regularly from midfield, narrowing his position at will in a trait he seems to be carrying with him from City.

It would be better for him to stay in midfield in this show.

He had more touches (55) than any player in the first half and created the first goal with a superb header across the penalty area and an elaborate corner kick routine that made Martinelli ignore his earlier move to score the first goal of the Premier League season. But Arsenal were so up front that the Ukraine international was not defensively troubled.

The second half was a different story, with Jordan Ayew taking advantage of Zinchenko’s inability to land the ball at his feet and by running off his shoulder.

The new signing looked shocked as he was replaced by Kieran Tierney of late. There may be a need to rethink Zinchenko’s role when facing the same pace on the wing in the future.

Although Jesus was stellar, it was the three-year Arsenal veteran, who joined the new recruits on his debut with the Gunners at Selhurst Park, who had the most impact.

Arteta’s team would not have won without William Saliba. He was aggressive when necessary but added much-needed calm to an otherwise lackluster defense as Palace dominated the game after the break.

Ben White’s passes misplaced early on and he grew more and more into his defense against Wilfried Zaha from a right-back position where he looked less comfortable.

Aaron Ramsdale demonstrated the inconsistency that he was able to eliminate for most of last season: digging a single pass 60 yards into Jesus’ feet before hitting his next attempt right in the face of an opponent; He makes an excellent save to deny Odsonne Edouard, then drops a straight cross.

It was a very even match, with Crystal Palace arguably playing as well in the second half as Arsenal did in the first. The hosts had more possession (56%), the same number of shots (10) and shots on goal (2) in 90 minutes.

Patrick Vieira’s team looks like they will be as entertaining this season as they have been in the past.

Predictably brilliant, Wilfried Zaha made a pass in the match as he shot through an impossible gap to find Iberichi Eze, who really should have equalised.

Joachim Andersen and Mark Gouyi looked solid for the most part, while Cheick Doucoure looked as if he was going to prove to be one of the best deals as he roamed the middle of the field, severing play and interfering in an odd way.

And despite Arsenal taking the three points, Vieira could be happier with the performance than Arteta, who admitted after the match that his side had a lot to work on.

High on his priority list will be what to do with White and Zinchenko, both good players, but they didn’t look like good full-backs on Friday night. with Tierney and Waiting for Takehiro Tomiyasu in the wings, Arteta may have to think again.

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