Arsenal could bring Gabriel back into the fold for Sunday’s clash with Manchester United after losing Thomas Partey to injury.

Partey has been playing on the right of the back four so far this season, is facing a couple of weeks on the sidelines, sideline him With Arsenal summer signing Jurrien Timber who is also out for long term, Mikel Arteta has been left to review his options ahead of the visit of United – and his Brazilian centre-half may be set for a recall.

Gabriel has fallen out of favour this term despite being a regular last season. He hasn’t been included in any of Arteta’s starting XIs this term, appearing from the bench on two occasions with Ben White being preferred as the man alongside William Saliba – the England international having been shuffled out to right-back in 2022-23 as Saliba and Gabriel built an impressive partnership.

The former Lille man has been the subject of interest from Saudi Arabia, albeit a move is yet to materialise. Arsenal made it known the player wasn’t for sale, yet he’s lost his starting role.

Now he could get the chance to stake his claim once more at the Emirates against a heavyweight rival.

Arteta claimed recently Gabriel would get more than his fair share of minutes throughout the season: “Gabi will play a lot of games, I’m sure and it’s about bringing the competition high and try to make the team play better, better, better and better and be more dominant and win more games. That’s the purpose of all of us.”

 

But the Arsenal boss has been keeping quiet over why exactly Gabriel has found himself left on the outside looking in.

Arteta could find himself reverting to the back four we saw so often last term when United visit the Emirates. It was White who was pushed out to right-back to accommodate Saliba last season following his return from a loan spell with Marseille, with Gabriel playing centrally and Oleksandr Zinchenko operating from left-back.

Arteta was quizzed on his defensive changes this term and justified his selection by highlighting how different players and different oppositions lead to him finding different solutions.

He said: “The personnel is different. We played differently against Manchester City and there were 43 different structures in different phases. Every morning I come from my house to Colney, sometimes I leave at six and I need to wipe the windscreen because it’s icy and at six o’clock normally I go down one road because it’s faster, now it’s 20 miles an hour.