Gabriel Magalhaes did not start Arsenal’s first three games of the season, and various rumours circulated concerning his being benched. Some of us gooners claimed Mikel Arteta realised he couldn’t rely on him because of his mistakes and bad judgement.
Gabriel returned to the team in the Premier League on Match Day 4 (we are now on Match Day 8). In these games, our Brazilian defensive beast has shined. Arteta’s decision to drop him initially appears to have been a wise one as it may have motivated him.
Last season, the ex-Lille man was one of our most dependable players, appearing in every minute of our league campaign as we pushed for, and nearly won, the Premier League. He has progressed from strength to strength since joining us.This season, he and William Saliba have been unforgiving to opposing forwards in our defense.
All credit goes to Saliba for silencing Erling Haaland in our 1-0 win over Manchester City last weekend. Nevertheless, the Frenchman couldn’t do it alone. It is his relationship with Gabriel is what ensured we were rock-solid defensively to keep the clean sheet. Gary Neville even stated after last weekend’s victory how important Gabriel is if we are to win the league:
“You know what’s more important than that? The two centre-backs and Rice,” said Neville as per the Mirror. “They will not win the league if they don’t have the two centre-backs and Rice.”
To be fair, he has been in excellent form since returning to the starting lineup in our 3-1 win over Manchester United.
After the international break, we will face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, and we are hopeful that the 26-year-old can maintain his good form in defense and prevent players like Raheem Sterling and Nicolas Jackson from scoring against us.
Gabriel Magalhaes is currently one of the top defenders in the English Premier League and is vital to Arsenal’s title credentials. At least I believe that, but do you?
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