Arsenal

Gabriel Magalhaes defends Eddie Nketiah new Arsenal contract with powerful seven-word message

Gabriel Magalhaes has defended fellow Arsenal teammate Eddie Nketiah on Twitter following backlash regarding the striker's new deal

Eddie Nketiah has faced backlash from a handful of Arsenal supporters on social media after penning a new ‘long-term’ deal at the Emirates Stadium. The 23-year-old, who once looked destined to leave the Gunners this summer, has also been rewarded with the club’s iconic No. 14 shirt as symbol of Mikel Arteta’s gratitude.

The Hale End graduate impressed late into the season, finding a flurry of goals after a succession of Premier League starts. Nketiah made 21 league appearances, scoring five goals and assisting once; he quickly grew into a pivotal figure in the Arsenal side, leaving Edu no choice but to offer the striker a new deal.

While the majority of fans rejoiced in Nketiah extending his future at the club, a minority took to social media to vent their frustration. Defending the youngster and fellow teammate, Gabriel Magalhaes posted a seven-word message on Twitter to silence the trolls.

The 24-year-old, who joined Arsenal from Lille in 2020 for around £23million, tweeted: “How can you be so ungrateful! OMG.”

Arsenal fans then quickly flooded tweet with replies – for the most part – to send Nketiah their support, to which Gabriel ‘liked’.

Despite the questionable backlash online, both Mikel Arteta and technical director Edu shared their delight at tying Nketiah down to a new contract. The Arsenal boss said: “I’m delighted Eddie is staying with us.

“He represents what we are all about and all the values of the club. We are very happy that he has extended his contract and now we have to get to work and continue to develop the great talent and person that we have in him.

“The foundations of this squad are built on young talent and in particular those who have come through our Academy system,” Edu added. “Eddie was released by another club as a young man but has always shown he has the attitude as well as the ability to become a top player. The fact he’s signed a new contract is an important part of our squad planning for next season and we’re all delighted.”

In addition, it has also been confirmed that Nketiah will switch to the number 14 shirt – which has been vacant since Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s exit in January – from next season, thus allowing him to follow in the footsteps of a certain Thierry Henry.

Though, Arteta is still said to still be in the market for a centre-forward this summer after allowing Aubameyang to join Barcelona during the January transfer window, while Alexandre Lacazette is also set to leave when his contract expires in the coming weeks. The Gunners have been heavily linked with a move for the Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus and technical director Edu has held talks with the player’s representatives in recent months, football.london understands.

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