Jack Wilshere has praised Arsenal’s rising star Gabriel Martinelli as someone who has ‘really good individual skills’, as he told Premier League Productions (04/09/22 at 4:10 pm).
The Arsenal youth coach shared that when he returned to the Emirates last season, Martinelli was the one who ‘jumped out’, as he highlighted Mikel Arteta’s importance in the player’s progression.
When Arteta replaced Unai Emery in the dugout, Martinelli was still a fresh-faced teenager, who had just landed in England the summer just past.
It was all a learning curve for the now-21-year-old, who was injured during football’s project restart of the pandemic-hit season, and hardly played as Arsenal lifted the FA Cup.
Even though there were cries for Arteta to provide the player with a chance when they were going through struggles, he refused and built up the player in his own way.
All of that is now coming to fruition, as Wilshere hailed Arteta’s role in Martinelli now being one of the top talents in the Premier League.
“When I went back there last season, he was the one who jumped out at me,” said Wilshere. “I think the manager has been really good with him by how he has used him.
“At the start of last season, he wasn’t playing. I think they paid what £5 million for him? He has put him in, then put him out and he has learnt a lot.
“He has got really good individual skills, as you would expect from a Brazilian. But now he’s starting to get himself into more dangerous areas. He is starting to get that understanding and that feeling goalscorers get.
“He is playing off the wing. He is timing his runs. Getting into the back post. And he will get just five or six goals by doing just that this season.”
MARTINELLI ONE OF ARSENAL’S BEST BUYS
Over the years, Arsenal have got a lot wrong in the transfer market and they have been seen to have wasted a lot of cash.
But Martinelli is one of their standout buys and a player, who was purchased for £6 million (Goal), that can still and will explode to further heights.
He is now a Brazil international and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar could be one where he and his footballing-mad nation shine the brightest.
Already this season, Martinelli has three goals from six Premier League games and he will be aiming to hit double figures, that’s for sure.