Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Wenger backs Gabriel to play against West Ham

Arsene Wenger has backed Gabriel Paulista to cope with the grief and loss he’s feeling this week and to be able to play against West Ham tomorrow.

It sounds as if the Brazilian is in line to start at right back in the absence of Hector Bellerin and Mathieu Debuchy (ruled out for 6 weeks today), and as Carl Jenkinon’s struggles look to cost him his place against the club he spent a season and a half on loan at.

The former Villarreal man released a highly emotional, heart-wrenching video message following the tragic event involving the Chapecoense football club, whose plane crashed in Colombia this week.

It’s tough to watch, as he had a personal connection to a number of the players and staff at the club. However, he was strong enough to play against Southampton in the EFL Cup on Wednesday, and Wenger believes he should be ok to take the field tomorrow.

Asked if he was in the right frame of mind, the boss said, “Yes, I think so. I will have a chat with him today, but if he is in the right frame of mind he will play.

“He has sent a very emotional message to the families of people involved in this crash, but  he still played on Wednesday, and if he has recovered well physically and mentally, I will play him as well.”

You have to have a lot of respect for Gabriel, the way he coped on Wednesday was hugely admirable, and maybe it’s a little reminder to all of us that footballers are human too, regardless of their stature or pay-packet.

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Oh man, that video definitely brought a tear to my eye. Props to him for his performance and his absolute authenticity. Hope he and we have a stormer this weekend.

Jay Song

It was a great messege and my heart sank too. I love Gabriel’s toughness and I hope he improves further and enjoy great Arsenal career.


I suppose one way for Gabriel to pay homage to those footballers who’s lives have been tragically cut short, is to go out and perform to his best on the pitch and I think that’s what he’ll do.


Suddenly I felt that football is not that important anymore.


It’s a shame how our fans have treated Jenks over the last weeks. He had some serious injury problems and just came back. He played one bad game and everybody was on his back. How on earth this boy should gain confidence and grow into that role when he gets booed from our own fans and everybody says he’s not Arsenal quality. It’s the same with Rambo and many othes of our players. When they are having a bad time the fans should stand by them instead of giving them extra stick to knock the rest of confidence out of… Read more »


I think the problem may stem from Arsene on this issue. His trust and faith in players has been good for Arsenal over the years, but the culture of “instant gratification” goes directly against this. So everyone who goes against Arsene, and there are a lot, also go against his picks sadly. Especially when they don’t perform.


Fantastic comment. I 100% agree. It’s shameful that they can even call themselves “supporters” when they’re doing the exact opposite of supporting the club’s players.

Gus Caesar

Booing your own players is disgusting but I have to say that I haven’t heard any booing of either him or Ramsey. I thought he actually got a decent reception when he was subbed on Wednesday night. Booing aside, I don’t think his performances should be exempt from the same scrutiny that other players get and he’s hardly a boy anymore – he’s 25 in February and has a 100 first team games under his belt. If he’s picked he gets my backing 100% but he’s been pretty poor in every game since his return. I feel for him in… Read more »


Not really the point of this piece but I thought Gabriel was good at CB against So’ton. And was decent at RB against Bournemouth


He’s a great player. But I do worry about his pace against Payet. I actually see Mustafi go up into opposing halfs quite often lately. I was wondering if they might put Gab through the middle with Mustafi outside. Time will tell.


He doesn’t really lack pace mate.

Gus Caesar

It’s an interesting idea because Mustafi has played at right-back loads and I fear Carroll having the same impact tomorrow as he did against us last season. Having said that, there’s also a risk in unsettling the Mustafi-Koscielny partnership which has looked good.

Andy Mack

I’m not sure they’ll risk Carroll as he’s been out for a while… I hope 😀


I don’t think Gabriel is slow!


Gabriel is quick…VERY quick. Payet shouldn’t be a problem for him (in terms of pace that is)

Cliff Bastin

We stand behind you Gabriel


Angel Gabriel


Shows that even a cold killer like Gabriel has emotions and a heart.


I don’t get the fans who think the world of Jenko just because he is a fellow gooner. Granted full marks for effort and he deserves our support when playing but frankly as I mentioned, he is technically limited and tends to panic because of that. Gabriel is not the best solution in Bellerin’s absence but he has looked solid enough and he has a bit of guile to his play. This whole nonsense about Jenkinson’s crossing espoused by the media, he whips those crosses in without looking for a target. Hit and hope which I guess was the old… Read more »

Gooners & Roses

A real genuine man he is, Gabriel. I hope he and the victims families able to cope well with this tragedy, and to think that it happened due to recklessness of the pilot and the airlines are even more heartbreaking.

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