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Exclusive: Jesus says ‘machine’ White ‘helping a lot’ with Gabriel-Saliba partnership

Exclusive: Jesus says ‘machine’ White ‘helping a lot’ with Gabriel-Saliba partnership

Gabriel Jesus has branded Arsenal team-mate Ben White a “machine” ahead of the Gunners’ UEFA Champions League quarter-final against Bayern Munich.

It is the first time they have reached this stage of the competition since 2009-10, while their opponents lifted their sixth European Cup only four years ago.

The German outfit also arrive in London blessed with the firepower of ex-Spurs striker Harry Kane, accompanied by the likes of Thomas Muller, Serge Gnabry and Jamal Musiala.

However, Arsenal have kept four consecutive clean sheets, while they also have the best defensive record in the Premier League, and Jesus is confident that formidable foursome can be kept quiet by the club’s impressive centre-back pairing of William Saliba and Gabriel.

“They [Saliba and Gabriel] are playing so good,” Jesus exclusively told TNT Sports. “They are having an amazing season and they are working hard.

“They are helping us and also it’s not only them. Ben White; this guy is always available, always fit and helping a lot. He tracks forward and then back. He’s a machine.

“Jakub [Kiwior] was playing at left-back. Normally he’s a centre-back, but he was playing there. [Oleksandr] Zinchenko is back now. [Takehiro] Tomiyasu is back now. Also Jorginho, Declan [Rice] and Thomas [Partey] is back now and they help a lot.

“Obviously Gabby and Saliba are having an amazing season. They deserve it. But also people around them help them a lot.”

Jesus might be able to provide some inside information to his team-mates on one particular Bayern Munich forward.

He played alongside Leroy Sane during their days together at Manchester City, where they won six major honours.

“What a person, what a guy, what a player,” the Brazilian continued. “We had very good moments together. I know of course his quality, he knows mine as well. It’s difficult to stop him.

“All the players they have; Harry Kane, Musiala, Muller, [Kingsley] Coman, Gnabry. They have a lot of quality players. It’s not only Sane, but more players.

“It’s Bayern. I grew up watching them. What a team they had, and they still have. It doesn’t matter the moment for them. It’s still Bayern. The players are still the players. They have a lot of quality.

“It’ll be a huge game, battle, and then obviously we’re going to try and beat them.”

They are therefore chasing the double, which would be a huge success for the Gunners, given they have never lifted the European Cup, while their last Premier League crown came in 2003-04.

But Jesus hopes the drama of their victory in the last round will stand them in good stead as they go in search of silverware.

“It’s an amazing feeling, to arrive at this part of the season with two big chances to win something,” he added. “Everyone knows how the Premier League and the Champions League is.

“It’s really tough to get in this part and this moment fighting for both. We have to be excited, and also happy.

“Both of them [the Premier League and Champions League] are difficult; really difficult.

“Obviously we are in the Champions League still, in the quarter-final you have to play two games – playing first and thinking you have another 90 minutes is really hard.

“After, you have to switch your mind because then you have a Premier League [game] and this is another way to think.

“From now until the end of the season, every game is a final in both competitions, so you have to imagine that at the moment we play nine finals. It’s really tough.

“Normally, when you win on penalties, of course for the heart it’s not good! But you try everything to win, and then when you go to penalties, you want to win, and you train for it, for this moment.

“I think this give us a little bit more confidence, because if the same thing happen again, we are ready, because we had it before.

“I prefer to win a normal game, but we went to penalties. It was a good thing, and obviously now we are confident.”

How to watch Arsenal v Bayern Munich?

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