Gary Neville says Arsenal striker Gabriel Jesus looked a ‘level above’ (Pictures: Sky Sports/Getty)
Gary Neville has hailed Gabriel Jesus after the striker impressed on his Arsenal debut in the victory over Crystal Palace.
Jesus completed a £45m move from Manchester City over the summer and starred in pre-season, scoring seven goals in five matches.
While he was not able to continue his brilliant goalscoring run against Palace, Jesus nevertheless contributed to Arsenal’s hard-fought 2-0 win at Selhurst Park.
The Brazilian tormented Crystal Palace’s defence in the first half, with his runs and movement impressing Neville and fellow Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher.
‘Arsenal were absolutely electric up front in the first five or 10 minutes. You were just thinking “wow”, watching Jesus,’ Neville said.
‘We saw glimpses of it at Manchester City but we watching him tonight and it was magical. The runs he was making were absolutely brilliant. Jesus just looked a level above.’
Former Liverpool defender Carragher added: ‘Jesus was excellent, he really was. He was so sharp, he was just electric.
‘He did one run and I just couldn’t believe it. I was so glad I wasn’t playing against him. He was sensational in that first half.’
Gabriel Martinelli’s first-half header and Marc Guehi’s second-half own goal saw Arsenal kick-start their 2022-23 season with a 2-0 win in south London.
On Arsenal’s performance, Neville said: ‘I think Arsenal will be really pleased with that victory, especially after what happened in the first game last season [when they lost to Brentford].
‘Crystal Palace threw everything at them but Arsenal withstood it. Arsenal’s defence stood up to it, the defenders did the job in the second half.’
French defender William Saliba also impressed on his Gunners debut, earning the Player of the Match award after helping Arsenal keep a clean sheet.
‘We knew it would be hard here but we were strong and solid,’ he said. ‘I’ve waited a long time to make my debut and I’m happy to start with a clean sheet and a win. It’s important for confidence.
‘It helped me to spend two years on loan in France because I’m young and I need to play. Now I’m back and I hope we can have a good season.’
More to follow…