Arsenal star Gabriel Jesus scorns Tottenham when talking about challengers

Arsenal striker Gabriel Jesus conspicuously ignored bitter north London rivals Tottenham when discussing the pressure his team will face from other teams after the World Cup break. The Gunners beat Wolves 2-0 on Saturday to ensure they enter the Christmas period five points clear at the top of the Premier League.

A brace from midfielder Martin Odegaard was enough to get the job done at Molineux, and Arsenal are now being talked about as serious contenders to win their first top-flight title since 2003-04.

Speaking after the game, Jesus insisted he and his teammates weren’t getting carried away, noting the quality elsewhere in the division, but he will have delighted fans by snubbing their old enemies, the Spurs.

“We cannot look at others,” Jesus said. “We know Man City, obviously I know them better than most people. But we have to do our job. We know that the Premier League is not easy, it is the toughest league in the world.

“It’s not just Man City, it’s Liverpool, Man United, Chelsea. What can we do? Just focus on ourselves, that’s all.”

Reflecting on what has happened in recent months to transform Arsenal from top four challengers to true title contenders, Jesus added: “First of all, it’s because of the team. I think everyone can see the spirit of the team and the way we love each other.

“The way we want to help each other out on the field. That’s what happens when you’re in another family. We spend more time here than at home. Everyone is like that. That’s why you’re working outside. We have a young team, so we run a lot, with and without the ball”.

Arsenal’s current closest rival is Manchester City, but Pep Guardiola’s side suffered a shock 2-1 loss at home to Brentford on Saturday to leave them five points behind in second place.

And the Gunners are still only seven points clear of Newcastle and eight points ahead of Spurs, even though they have played one game less than both teams. Much will depend on how Arteta and his players can deal with the pressure to be the best when the Premier League resumes on Boxing Day.

Arsenal have a relatively sweet couple of games to get things rolling again when they host West Ham and travel to Brighton. But then they face Newcastle, Tottenham and Manchester United back-to-back in the New Year in what could be a defining period for their hopes of finishing top.

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