Kevin Campbell has claimed that Arsenal can still drop Gabriel from the XI, even though Mikel Arteta’s side are sitting at the top of the Premier League table.
The former striker was reacting to Gabriel’s indifferent start to the new Premier League season and how Arsenal have the chance to bring in Ben White to partner William Saliba instead.
Last season, both White and Gabriel formed a very strong partnership at the back, but Arteta opted to change it for this campaign.
Fans have been itching for Saliba to be handed a chance, three years after signing, added with a number of strong spells out on loan.
But rather than go three at the back, the change has seen White move to right-back, whilst Saliba and Gabriel sit at the heart of the club’s defence.
The former of Arsenal’s Brazil star at the back has been questioned and Campbell pointed out that’s why you have a ‘quality squad’, as he told the Highbury Squad.
“You have to earn your position in the team, that’s what having a big squad does,” said Campbell. “That’s what a quality squad does.
“If you have a quality Ben White there, who is playing out of position, and playing pretty well out of position and Gabriel isn’t doing it. Then you have the opportunity to adjust. You have the opportunity to drop Gabriel and put Ben White in there with Saliba.
“Or you can go to a three and adjust the team depending on the opposition. I don’t think it’s a given for any of the defenders.
“It’s not a matter of because Gabriel and Saliba started the season, and we are top of the league, that you don’t change it. You can change it.”
GABRIEL’S PLACE SAFE FOR NOW
The 24-year-old has enough credit in the bank to maintain his place in the XI, but he also needs to be aware of his ruthless manager.
Arteta has proven during his time at the club that if he needs to make calls that players don’t like, then he will, regardless of the reaction.
So far, from stripping Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as captain to pushing Mesut Ozil out of the door, it is all paying off.
Therefore, possibly dropping Gabriel to the bench would be one of his easier calls, as Arsenal won’t be in Europa League action against PSV on Thursday because the game has been postponed, they will now face Brentford at the weekend, instead.