Arsenal top-four failure has ‘ramifications’ on Jesus deal – UCL not ‘a necessity’ for Tielemans

Jason Soutar
Reported Arsenal target Gabriel Jesus celebrates his goal

Arsenal targets Gabriel Jesus and Youri Tielemans have contrasting views on the Gunners’ failure to qualify for next season’s Champions League, according to reports.

Mikel Arteta led his side to a fifth-place finish in the Premier League last term, despite fourth being within their grasp with only three games remaining.

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Defeats against arch-rivals Tottenham and Newcastle meant they were relying on a Norwich City victory against Spurs on the last day of the season, but Antonio Conte’s side cruised to a 5-0 victory at Carrow Road.

Arsenal’s failure to finish in the Champions League places looked to have cast doubt over the club’s pursuit of their top targets, including Leicester midfielder Tielemans and Manchester City forward Jesus.

And according to The Athletic, the Gunners’ top-four failings “could have ramifications” for a deal to sign Jesus.

Arteta is on the lookout for a new No. 9 following Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s departures. Furthermore, Eddie Nketiah is out of contract this summer but has been offered a fresh deal.

Technical director Edu has been in discussions with the Brazilian international’s representatives for a number of months with talks progressing well.

Interest in the 25-year-old is believed to be high. Real Madrid, Tottenham and Chelsea are all said to be keen and can offer Jesus Champions League football.

A deal for Tielemans is thought to be less complex.

The Leicester playmaker is out of contract next summer and has rejected a number of extension offers put on the table, but his professionalism has impressed Arteta, who has carried out “extensive background checks” on the Belgian.

Tielemans was initially eager to play in the Champions League, but no longer sees it as “a necessity”, the report adds.

Arsenal are still in a “strong position” to land the 25-year-old and have “presented the player with the most compelling proposition”.

The Premier League club are confident they can land both Jesus and Tielemans, but are considering alternative options should negotiations break down.

Sassuolo striker Gianluca Scamacca is one Arsenal’s “more feasible options” this summer with deals for Roma’s Tammy Abraham and Inter Milan’s Lautaro Martinez “looking particularly challenging”.