Jurgen Klopp admits he ‘always liked’ top class Arsenal star

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has admitted that he has always admired Arsenal striker Gabriel Jesus.

The Brazilian has gone up against Klopp’s Reds in high-voltage encounters on numerous occasions during his time with Manchester City. Jesus also holds a good record against Liverpool, having scored five goals and laid out three assists in 12 matches versus the Merseyside outfit.

He will now feature against the Reds for Arsenal, who he joined on a deal worth around £45 million this summer. The two teams will clash in the Premier League at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday (October 9).

Klopp will undoubtedly have to keep Jesus quiet if his Liverpool side are to pick a win against an upbeat Gunners unit. Speaking in a press conference ahead of the match, the German tactician praised the Brazilian and said (as quoted by the Liverpool Echo):

I always liked Gabriel Jesus as a player. Exceptional player, you always saw that at Man City. His role at City was a 9 or a winger, everyone said last season City had no No.9, but he was still there!”

Klopp also acknowledged Jesus’ superb start to life at the Emirates, stating:

“Now he plays his role. He’s flying and full of confidence. Top class.”

In nine matches across all competitions, the forward has scored five goals and laid out four assists. Thanks to his exploits, his team are currently top of the Premier League standings with 21 points from eight games.

Gabriel Jesus starred off the bench during Arsenal’s win in midweek

With Arsenal taking on Liverpool this weekend, Mikel Arteta opted to give Gabriel Jesus some rest in midweek. The forward didn’t start the Gunners’ UEFA Europa League encounter against Bodo/Glimt on Thursday (October 6) but was named on the bench.

Jesus eventually joined proceedings in the 59th minute, replacing compatriot Gabriel Martinelli. His team were already 2-0 up at that stage thanks to goals from Eddie Nketiah and Rob Holding.

The Brazilian’s class was on full display as he operated in a deeper role to orchestrate play and completed four of his five dribble attempts. One of those saw Jesus dance past three Bodo defenders inside the box, displaying immense close control, and set up Fabio Vieira for the Gunners’ third goal.

It was a superb display from a player who has settled in incredibly well at Arsenal. Jesus will now look to lead his team to a win in one of their toughest tests of the season against Liverpool on Sunday.

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