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Breaking Down the Gabriel Magalhaes Smooth Criminal Meme Going Viral

Breaking Down the Gabriel Magalhaes Smooth Criminal Meme Going Viral

Gabriel Magalhaes had a curious summer window as he was constantly linked with a move away from the Emirates to the sands of Saudi. The 25-year-old Brazilian International did not even start the first three matches for Arsenal, unlike last season where he was a mainstay with William Saliba at the center of defense.  

However, Gabriel Magalhaes had his first start of the season against Manchester United, and one of his Michael Jackson-inspired “smooth criminal move” would give Arsenal a much-needed victory.  

Sunday’s game was very important for Arsenal, as they faced their longtime rivals, Manchester United, at the Emirates. Both clubs were looking for a win so as not to fall behind Manchester City and the top-four position. 

While the game was going 1-1 with Arsenal dominating position, a counterattack from Manchester United and a wonderful finish by the substitute, Alejandro Garnacho, in the 88th minute would see them take the lead against the Gunners.  

However, VAR would intervene, and the goal would be disallowed, all thanks to Gabriel Magalhaes’s excellent positioning.  

Not just his positioning sense, but the pose that Gabriel would make so that he is not on the same line as Garnacho would remind fans of Michael Jackson’s antigravity lean, a classic dance move, seen in his song, Smooth Criminal.  

With Premier League’s fan creativity being a benchmark of ingenuity, they took no time to draw an analogy between Magalhaes’s unintended pose and the Michael Jackson tilt, and memes are already flooding Twitter and Reddit.  

Whether Gabriel Magalhaes is a Michael Jackson fan or not is still up for debate.  

This is not the first time that we have seen a Magalhaes-themed meme. There is another meme out there that we would like to share.  

This one is related to his name, “Gabriel”. When Arsenal signed Gabriel Jesus last summer from Manchester City, the Gunners had three players named Gabriel in their squad, Magalhaes, Jesus, and Martinelli.  

This Brazilian trio of Gabriels became the perfect Spiderman meme template often used on social media to symbolize something similar. The meme was so spot on that all the Gabriels decided to recreate that on Arsenal’s training ground, giving us another rendition of the iconic meme.