There are an abundance of exciting prospects from Brazil. It’s, without doubt, the holy grail of footballing talent. Rodrygo, Vinicius, Reinier Jesus, even Gabigol is still a talent. The length of this list is ridiculous many of them are still unknown to most of the world! But a young Brazilian playing in the Premier League for a top team is still not getting the credit he deserves. Gabriel Martinelli, put some respect on this man’s name.
The striker scored once again for Arsenal (as seen many times this season), this time with his first goal in the Premier League. He became the Gunners’ youngest player to score for the side on their first start in the league. 18 years old and he’s leading the line for the red of North London. Surely, he is already proving that he completely deserves that Premier League starting berth.
1 – At 18 years 174 days old, Gabriel Martinelli is the youngest player to score for Arsenal on their first Premier League start. Starlet. pic.twitter.com/wgqtDqdEgx
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 9, 2019
Arsenal’s season hasn’t produced too many bright moments for their fans to get excited about. But one of those things has been Gabriel Martinelli.
Handed opportunities in the Europa League and Carabao Cup under Unai Emery, Martinelli had been excellent scoring seven goals in six appearances (Transfermarkt), including a brace in a thrilling 5-5 draw with Liverpool at Anfield.
However, until Monday night Martinelli hadn’t started in the Premier League, with his seven previous appearances all coming from the bench and amassing just 96 minutes. ‘
He started at the Emirates on the right of an attacking midfield trio alongside Nicolas Pepe and Mesut Ozil and behind Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but had the freedom to move central when he could.
And it was through those movements that Martinelli finally got his first Premier League goal. It came at a time when Arsenal looked without inspiration or confidence but Sead Kolasinac’s run into the box and pull back found Martinelli in the perfect position to fire home first time. A cool finish for the 18-year-old which started Arsenal’s comeback.
Not just goals but the quality of these goals too, they’re not all tap-ins. He’s a smart finisher with intelligent movement and a hard worker. Something the Emirates faithful have been crying out for from their side.
Bargain of the season
As aforementioned, people rave about Vinicius, Rodrygo and other Brazilian talents. Those two have costed Real Madrid over €80million. Reinier Jesus is on every big club’s radar and could cost even more. Martinelli on the other hand, £6million. £6m. We have to appreciate how good of signing he’s been, especially for a price that cheap.
Three shots and 1.5 key passes per game in the Europa League this season. But also an astonishing 2.8 tackles. He’s a centre forward and is putting in more tackles than most centre defenders. These three stats (via WhoScored) perfectly summarize the Brazilian. Productive, industrious and talented.
Arsenal have managed to find a gem with the former Ituano forward. Fans were calling for him to start over Lacazette, a testament to how good he’s been when he’s played. Pace, power, flair, an eye for goal, good passing. At such a young age, he’s displaying incredible ability that isn’t getting the credit it deserves.
He’s definitely one of the Premier League’s most exciting talents. No doubt about it after his goal today against West Ham. Hopefully, now, he’ll get more game time in the top flight.