Emile Smith Rowe has picked out the two Arsenal players who have “changed the whole dynamic” at Arsenal this season.
The Gunners’ last season ended in disappointment as they were pipped to a top four spot and Champions League football by bitter rivals Tottenham.
But Mikel Arteta’s side have gone up a couple of gears this season and currently top the Premier League, ahead of Manchester City in second, by eight points.
And Smith Rowe believes it’s City who have played a major part in Arsenal’s success this term, having sold them Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko in the summer.
Smith Rowe said: “I felt it from pre-season, you could see the look on everyone’s face as to how ready everyone was.
“With the likes of Oleksandr Zinchenko and Gabriel Jesus coming in, it just felt like the whole dynamic changed. They’ve been there, they know what it’s like to win.
“I’d definitely say a lot of it was down to them coming in because their mentality has been indescribable. I can’t believe Manchester City let them go. ‘Zenko is one of the best technical players I’ve ever seen.
“So, I want to be a part of it. I’m getting minutes playing for England – it’s all really good and the aim is to get my name back on that team sheet for Arsenal as quickly as I can.
“I’ve just got to make sure I stay fit as well and when the manager needs me, I’m going to be ready to perform.”
Smith Rowe’s teammate Bukayo Saka also singled Zinchenko out for praise ahead of England’s Euro 2024 qualifier against Ukraine, agreeing that he and Jesus have been key to Arsenal’s rise this term.
Saka said: “Zinchenko has brought quality – but he’s brought so much more. You can see how he plays and how he controls the game. He’s an outstanding player.
“He has great leadership qualities, so he’s really helping us on all fronts. They (Zinchenko and Gabriel Jesus) have brought that winning mentality to us as players who have been there and won the league.
“In difficult moments they know how it feels, they can encourage us because we have a lot of young players. They really help us with the mental side of things.”