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Ex-Gunner can't see Arsenal get by without Gabriel Jesus.

Striker Gabriel Jesus injured his knee during the World Cup and is expected to be sidelined for three months following a successful surgery.

Arsenal advised of a clear ‘worry’ about their Premier League title odds [Getty]
Arsenal advised of a clear ‘worry’ about their Premier League title odds [Getty]

The Gunners continue to be linked with Shakhtar Donetsk's 21-year-old forward Mykhaylo Mudryk despite the Ukrainian club's unwillingness to do business.

Paul Merson is worried Arsenal's Premier League title chances could be affected if they are compelled to rely on Eddie Nketiah while Gabriel Jesus is out on the sidelines due to injury.

Mikel Arteta's Gunners, who started the 2022-23 campaign in flying colours, are currently five points clear of Manchester City and can extend the gap to eight points if they beat West Ham at the Emirates Stadium on Boxing Day.

It remains to be seen whether the north London club will continue their fine form following the break, especially now they will be without Jesus, who got injured in the Qatar 2022 World Cup, though, Arteta recently revealed that they will be active in the January transfer market.

However, ex-Arsenal midfielder Merson believes Arteta's boys will find it hard to seal a Champions League spot without a competent replacement for Jesus.

'It's a massive worry for Arsenal that they're now relying on an out-of-form Eddie Nketiah when the Premier League returns,' Merson wrote in the Daily Star.

'They could go eight points clear if they beat West Ham before Manchester City play a game and you still wouldn't fancy them to win the title without Gabriel Jesus.

'It's hard because even though he doesn't score an awful lot of goals, he is still so effective. If he's out for three months, I'd be shocked if they got in the top four.

'Without being horrible, what Premier League team does Eddie Nketiah get in? Wolves are bottom for instance, they're desperate for a goal and they wouldn't go and get him.'

Merson added: 'Jesus has just been too influential in the first few months of the season, I just don't see how they get by without him.

'With Arsenal, their depth isn't quite good enough but all their best players have played virtually every game. Now all of a sudden, it's a panic.'

Jesus joined Arsenal from champions Manchester City over the summer transfer window and has found the net five times and registered seven assists in all competitions so far.

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