Arsenal could have a free run at securing the services of Gabriel Jesus over the coming weeks, with Tottenham not expected to challenge the Gunners in their pursuit of the Brazilian forward, according to reports.
Jesus has been heavily linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium over the last few months and will reportedly be allowed to leave Manchester City after the signing of Erling Haaland, who was officially unveiled by the Premier League champions earlier this month.
Arsenal have been locked in talks over a move for Jesus for some time, with Mikel Arteta having identified the 25-year-old as a priority target after losing Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang since the turn of the year.
It seems as though the Spaniard’s pursuit of Jesus could begin to gather pace over the coming weeks, with Tottenham no longer interested in rivalling the Gunners for his signature, according to the Daily Star.
Tottenham have also been linked with Jesus over the past few months but it is claimed that Arsenal will now be able to swoop in unopposed after their north London rivals backed away from launching a formal bid for the City frontman.
He is said to be keen on the idea of linking up with Arteta, who coached him at the Etihad Stadium before taking the Arsenal job back in 2019, and has been left impressed by the 40-year-old’s level of ambition.
Jesus was also offered to the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona but is thought to prefer the idea of staying in the Premier League after settling down in England since joining City in the summer of 2016.
His arrival at Arsenal would represent a huge coup for Arteta, who is said to be looking to fast-track the addition of a new striker following the permanent capture of Fabio Vieira from Porto earlier this week.
Arsenal are believed to be the clear frontrunners in the race to land Jesus at this stage, with talks having entered into the advanced stages over the last few days.
However, the Gunners will be forced to pay in excess of £42million to tempt City into selling up as they look to recoup a decent fee for his services.
Jesus would offer Arsenal some much-needed versatility at the top of the pitch and is clearly a striker capable of bagging plenty of goals in the Premier League, having scored 13 times in all competitions over the course of last season.
Mikel Arteta has already been urged to hand Jesus a starring role in attack by former Premier League forward Kevin Phillips, who believes that Arsenal will be able to succeed in their efforts to snap him up this summer.
“He’s been playing in and around that Champions League spaces for a number of years now, and challenging for the trophy as well,” Phillips recently told Football Insider.
“He has been almost a bit-part player for City [but] you’d imagine that for Arsenal, he would be the first choice. Arsenal haven’t got the Champions League, but he can help them get there.
“Jesus can be the main man for Arsenal, which can be the most important thing for any player looking to make a move. He will want to play week-in, week-out.”