Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Gabriel admits Arteta told him to reject Saudi move

When Gabriel Magalhaes was benched by Mikel Arteta for the first three games of the season, it was odd, to say the least. All the more so when the manager claimed the decision was tactical.

As was reported at the time, the defender, a near ever-present for the Gunners last season, was a target for sides in Saudi Arabia and appeared to have had his head turned by the money on offer.

Arsenal wouldn’t countenance an offer and once the transfer window closed, the defender was restored to the starting lineup. Since then, he’s missed just one league game, renewing the impressive partnership he’s struck up with William Saliba.

Having hinted at it previously, Gabriel has now admitted that his early season mental wobble did indeed result in him being dropped.

“It was tough, obviously at the start. I wanted to play and it was very difficult for me but I understood what the coach had to do,” Gabriel told the Press Association.

“It is difficult for any player to not be in the team but now I’m back in I want to keep on working hard to prove my worth.

“He [Arteta] spoke to me and obviously explained the reasons behind the decision. Why I should stay – but the most important thing was to remain focused and concentrate – he knew how important I was to the team, so I’m happy to be back and to be able to help the team in every game.

“I’m happy to be back in the team and hopefully I can help them moving forward.”

In yesterday’s press conference, Arteta was full of praise for Gabriel and the way he’s matured since moving to Arsenal from Lille in 2020.

“There are a lot of things that have happened to him,” said Arteta.

“His role in the team has grown. In his personal life as well, he’s got a very different personal life than he had before with his family and his language.

“And I think now as well, I think he changed a lot of things in his life and he improved his mentality and he can decide what he wants to be and I think he made the right call to take the direction that he took.”

It sounds like he needed some guidance along the way. When Arteta was asked whether Gabriel had made all those decisions himself or if he’d needed a nudge, he said: “A little bit of both.”

Arsenal are certainly better off for having kept the Brazil international. His great form has been rewarded this month with a nomination for PFA Fans’ Player of the Month for January. You can vote for him here.

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Our toothy Brazilian ain’t for sale any time soon


I’ll take a bite of that


* The Gabriel ‘screech’


Really? He considered a move to that shitty league?! I can’t even believe he needed convincing to stay at Arsenal!
An ambitious player knows Saudis isn’t the best for your career. Ask the “I want to promote football there” prick that moved to Ajax, and allegedly didn’t even got paid hahaha


His agent is our old pal Uncle Kia, so I think that pretty much explains it.


The poisonous shadow of Kia still hanging in there at Arsenal. How many of our players does he represent?


I’m glad Arteta has been able to build something at Arsenal that has the power and light to battle such shadows. Hmmm, think I might be dangerously close to Harry Potter here…


Fair comment but if you’re young and an obscene amount of money is offered to you then you don’t always look at the bigger picture. I’m sure he’ll learn from this and realise this decision was the best he could have gone with by a long way.


You could turn my head 720 degrees with that kind of money, so no hard feelings. So glad he stayed.


I also think if you come from a poorer background, as I think he does, makes it even harder to turn down that sort of money. Shows a lot about him as a person that he did eventually turn it down despite that

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

He’s been used to bigger money than affluent families even in Ligue 1. Attraction to more money is a universal thing.


There are very different degrees of attraction, and what you become “used to” as an adult has very little to do with it. It’s what you grow up with tends to shape your psychology – that’s a universal thing.


I did secretly think that a little, too…


Spot on mate!


Moreso if you feel slighted


And when you are not young an obscene amount of money is not on the table. Difficult things…


Its not as if he is paid peanuts by Arsenal.
I am sure there are 203062512 Brazilians who would gladly give their right arm for Gabriel’s quality of life.
The grass is seldom greener on the other side.


On that particular side there isn’t much grass to begin with


He may be thinking about the needs of impoverished family and friends he can help, not just himself. Fair enough if he thinks that is more important than being at a “big club” (a concept mostly to do with fan vanity).

Nigel Winterburn's noggin

How people don’t even take into
consideration other people realities is quite jarring. Coming from a community where 70 percent of the population lives on less than a dollar a day. And you get the opportunity to earn more money than you can imagine knowing fully well that your job has a very short career period which can end at any time. How’s that not going to turn anyone’s head knowing the number of people whose survival depends absolutely on you.


And he is so young. At that age I didn’t ever know what to do and how to live. Respect to Our Gabriel!


What it is he wants to buy with Saudi money that he can’t already afford

Wrong answers only….

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Some players spoke about having to feed the family. Their families use rakes not forks to eat the caviar, I guess.

Ellis McPickle

Some yet to be discovered substance thats brighter than porcelain.


A desert nation


Absolutely love Big Gab!


I feel it’s a little unclear if he was dropped because his head was turned by Saudia Arabia, or if his head was turned by Saudia Arabia because he was dropped. Either way, delighted he stayed. Half of the best CB pairing in the league ATM and long may that continue.


I also don’t get it.

Dr. Gooner

Fascinating. The sequence of events hinted at by these comments suggests that Gabi himself wanted to go to the Saudi league and that’s why he was dropped, and that Arteta convinced him to stay. Stranger things have happened but as others have pointed out, the story doesn’t quite make sense. A manager trying to convince his player to stay would play him more than ever. I think the real story is that Arsenal were exploring offers for Big Gabi, but they ended up pulling the plug on the sale. While they were exploring the sale, he sat because they wanted… Read more »


Hope you are not right!

Public Elneny

Just keep Gabriel and Saliba together for the next decade whatever it takes. If we sell either one of them we’ll end up spending hundreds of millions over several seasons to replace what we had. These two have the potential to be legendary, please don’t dick about with that

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