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Gabriel Jesus has transformed Arsenal on and off the pitch… he wanted four goals against Leicester

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Gabriel Jesus stood in front of the cameras at the end of a record-breaking home debut for Arsenal and declared: ‘I’m so happy.’ A few minutes later, his manager offered a slightly different version of events.

“He’s disappointed in the dressing room because he said he could have made four,” said Mikel Arteta.

It was about the first time wires had been crossed between Jesus and his colleagues all afternoon.

Gabriel Jesus was number one on his Arsenal home debut, scoring two and putting on two more

Gabriel Jesus was number one on his Arsenal home debut, scoring two and putting on two more

The Brazilian forward curled a great opener before taking in an expert second-place finish in the back

The Brazilian forward curled a great opener before taking in an expert second-place finish in the back

The Brazilian forward curled a great opener before taking in an expert second-place finish in the back

In this win over Leicester, he was the centerpiece around which Arsenal’s attack brims with ingenuity and intelligence.

He scored two – his first competitive goals since arriving this summer for £45 million – and assisted two more.

If early signs in pre-season showed that the 25-year-old would give Arsenal a little more oomph, it was a gig to suggest he could transform Arteta’s side.

“He is a world-class player. In terms of his numbers, the way he works, his attitude during every day training. He is an example,” said Oleksandr Zinchenko, who also came over from Manchester City to Arsenal this summer.

‘He’s still young. Of course everyone has to improve some things. He’s not ideal (the finished article), but he scores goals. The rest, he’s incredible.’

Getting Jesus on the ball in the penalty area has given Arsenal a big boost in attack

Getting Jesus on the ball in the penalty area has given Arsenal a big boost in attack

Getting Jesus on the ball in the penalty area has given Arsenal a big boost in attack

The Emirates rose to greet their new number 9 when Jesus was replaced with six minutes left.

By then he had fired seven shots, the most of all the players and more than Leicester’s team put together. He had made the most shots on target (three) and the most hits (15) in the opponent’s box.

The next best? Four. No one enjoyed more successful dribbles, only Gabriel Martinelli (four) made more key passes than Jesus (three).

Jesus became the first Arsenal player to score twice in his Premier League debut. On Saturday, he scored as many non-penalty goals in the Premier League as Alexandre Lacazette in all of last season.

And yet stats can’t do justice to the attacker’s impact. Even his goals tell a succinct story.

MATCH FACTS, PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE AND PLAYER REVIEWS

ARSENAL (4-3-3): Ramsdale 5; White 7 (Tomiyasu 75min, 6), Saliba 7, Gabriel 6.5, Zinchenko 8 (Tierney 77); Odegaard 7, Partey 7, Xhaka 8; Saka 7 (Smith Rowe 84), Jesus 9 (Nketiah 84), Martinelli 8.5.

Scorers: Jesus 23, 35, Xhaka 55, Martinelli 75.

Booked: Tomiyasu.

Manager: Mikel Arteta 8.

Leicester (3-5-1-1): section 5; Fofana 5.5, Evans 6, Amartey 6 (Daka 63, 6); Castagne 5, Tielemans 5.5 (Praet 63, 6), Ndidi 6.5, Dewsbury-Hall 6.5, Justin 5; Madison 6.5; Vardy 6 (Iheanacho 70, 7).

Scorers: Saliba and 53, Maddison 74.

Booked: fofana.

Manager: Brendan Rodgers 6.

Presence: 60,033.

Referee: Darren England 7.

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Fans will remember the cheeky curled finish that opened his Arsenal account. Perhaps most telling was not how Jesus ended that movement, but how he started it. The Brazilian chased a long ball, spinning past Jonny Evans before finding a teammate.

His second goal was easier, a header from close range. His third should have arrived soon.

Wilfred Ndidi denied Jesus’ excellent tackle after receiving a goal kick and breaking away from Evans.

Vossen goalkeeper Danny Ward then forced him after a neat passing movement. But again, the significance of that opportunity lay in how it came about: Jesus relinquished possession with a loose pass.

He raced to win it back, only to give the ball away one more time. Undeterred, the striker led the counter pressure that forced a turnover and then ran towards the penalty area. Zinchenko to Martin Odegaard, to Jesus, to Martinelli, to Jesus. All in a flash.

In the second half he became the offerer – Granit found Xhaka after Ward messed up a cross. Arsenal’s fourth arrived after Jesus found room to turn and drive into the penalty area.

He drew in defenders before feeding Martinelli to score. A second top-level hat-trick of his career never materialized, but that didn’t defuse the electricity his performance generated in the Emirates. The stadium was alive with optimism.

“I never doubted him,” Zinchenko said. “He’s an incredible player, always hungry for goals. I’m so happy for him.’

Based on this early evidence, Jesus’ best return, 14 goals in 2019-20, is sure to be surpassed.

Arteta also suggested that the squad as a whole is already benefiting from his arrival.

“It raises the standards as he is every day, the way he talks to them, the way they connect,” Arteta said. ‘You can see that the interactions and speed of execution is now on a different level.’

Is it too early to wonder if Jesus could join the likes of Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp in the pantheon of great Arsenal forwards?

“I’m not going to judge (or) compare them,” Zinchenko said. “As a kid I was a huge fan of that Arsenal team. That was a different time. Football is (now) on another level. Everything goes faster.’

With Jesus at the helm, Arsenal seem to be doing well. Fast.