Gabriel Martinelli scored his second Premier League goal of the season, and his ninth in all competitions, in Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Sheffield United at the Emirates this afternoon.

The young Brazilian was quickest to react to a deflected Bukayo Saka cross just before half-time, and in the absence of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang he filled the gap well from the left hand side.

His hard-running, effective approach was something that drew praise from Mikel Arteta after the game.

“He’s an 18-year-old kid with all the enthusiasm but as well, he’s so brave to make decisions, to threaten the opponent every time,” he said.

“He’s all the time in the middle of the goal, waiting for an opportunity to come. The fact he hasn’t played 90 minutes for a while – since his injury – but is still in the way he went about every single action is impressive.”

Martinelli was perhaps a bit of a surprise choice to start, given how much Arteta talked up Reiss Nelson before the game.

However, it seems as if the 20 year old has suffered an injury set-back which sounds quite serious.

“We had an incident in training,” he said. “The doctors are still deciding how long it’s going to take, but it’s not looking good.”

That’s a blow for him and for the squad, so let’s keep fingers crossed it’s not as bad as it’s being made out right now.

How did Martinelli rate? Leave your ratings at: Arsenal 1-1 Sheffield United – player ratings

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HelderHughes

Ah fuck. That sucks for Reiss, and for us. It would appear our injury demons are back with a vengeance. This time they seem to be extra cruel by targeting our young and talented squad members.

Really hope it’s not too serious. I’ve said this way too many times these past few seasons but just when his Arsenal career seemed to be on a really promising upward trajectory. Get well soon Reiss.

Jht

So frustrated for the lads, for the fans, for the club. So many factors, so much out our hands, lile refrees doing this for us week in week out. Feel so flat right now, better just go to sleep. Get well soon Reiss!!

Atom

Given the top 4 is truly gone at this point the focus really needs to be on the EL as a path to CL and figuring out who does and doesn’t fit where Arteta is going. As painful as this season is, we might look back on it as the pivotal year where we finally admitted that getting to where we ultimately want to be required a total reboot rather than band aids to push us back to 4th.

HelderHughes

It’s funny how Arteta has now started worse than Emery but I still have full confidence in him as our manager. He must be doing some sort of Jedi mind trick on us all because I’m actually not at all panicked. And I panic a lot as a gooner.

jw1

Was having this convo elsewhere a bit ago. It’s frustrating, yes. But we’re seeing the traits we want in the team. Dash of maturity, more on-pitch familiarity and a couple of players for variety and depth? Feels like it all will start clicking.

A bit ticked we didn’t get a second– on the front-foot much of the 2nd half. Today, half the XI– a bunch of young guys with a few senior players. Been a long time since I’ve been optimistic– but I am.

BooomerGoooner

We don’t have a squad (or the cash to build one) for CL next season. I’ll be okay with missing it completely. Maybe even Europa, too. Let Mikel have a full season working the lads.

Doesn’t seem to be hurting LCFC this season (or the one they were champs)?

Jht

Not to make it to the europe is end for the club at highest level, as we would become financially incompetent comparing to clubs that have funds. We might attract avg talent, but top level as such as we’ve known is left behind then. Ultimately Kroenkes will be losing money and fans will be losing pride, but we would be back up there again one day. But without europe, it will be hell of a rocky road

CorporateMan

My thoughts as well.
We could do a Chelsea who missed out on Europe and won the PL with Conte in 2016/17.
Focusing on the PL could give us the success we crave
We may not win the league, but we could get top four and then take it from there

Spanish Gooner

Chelsea had a title winning team from the year before who had downed tools, spent £150m and had about 10 PL level players (Moses, Cuadrado etc) that they could recall from loan to fit Conte’s tactics. A better example would be literally every other team (except the freak Leicester one) in Premier League history who finished outside the top 6, then didn’t suddenly become brilliant

SLC Gooner

I don’t think one year without Europe would be the end. Liverpool, United and Chelsea have all survived that. At this point, I’d be inclined to focus on winning Europa this year, which would get us into CL, with bigger money next year, and Tues/Wed matches instead of Thurs. Absent that, a season out of Europa and focusing on getting top four might make sense.

Jimbo1

Interesting point about the Kroenkes losing money. Maybe if they lose enough they might choose to sell up. It could be the only way to get them out, even if it means a few lean years for Arsenal.

Fatgooner

I got down-voted to China yesterday for saying that I couldn’t give a damn about the Premier League this season; after today’s performance does anyone want to argue with me?This is probably the worst group of players we’ve had since the dying days of George Graham, back in the mid 1990s. We are as average as a really average thing and will finish between about 8th and 12th. That’s why I just can’t get to upset or excited. We’re boring to watch and hardly ever win. Who cares? The sad thing is that all this has been coming for years.… Read more »

Jht

Well if things are that bad you better adopt into supporting your avg team like you know it is one. We got we got and we need to keep faith and and have some hope for tomorrow, since things are not that great today. Measured by turnover we are still 11th largest club in the world, mostly respected by the scenes (although you can exclude refs).

OnTheRightPath

I don’t think it’s a lack of investment. It’s what we invested in that’s the problem. Mostly. I do think the senior appointments this season are a very good step forward. I really like what I see or hear about edu so far (albeit mostly hearsay) and I have been very pleasantly surprised by the early impact of Arteta. I’m feeling upbeat because I think we’ve turned a corner. it’s already a long way back but we seem to be on the right path at last. Fingers crossed.

John Lavery

We could try to get Usmanov back?

Der Kaiser

Now we know why Arteta ( quite rightly) heaped praise on Reiss Nelson in pre- match news conference ( good psychology for a young injured lad). Perhaps in next game Martinelli should be chosen as central striker ahead of Lacca. He looks a natural

Richie

But then who would play left wing? Ceballos?

Der Kaiser

Newly signed ( maybe we will) left back with Saka on left?

Reality check

“But then who would play left wing? Ceballos”

Can do, especially in possession focused teams. Silva, Santi, Iniesta, Nasri etc have all played large parts of their career as creative wingers,

Santori

Really gutted for Reiss. …he was looking to have finally found some form and we need him because thus far for all the flashes of potential brilliance, 72m signing Pepe has flattered to deceive. When Auba comes back in, I’d frankly prefer to see martinelli on right flank in lieu of Pepe, Auba on other end and then Laca up top. Have Pepe come in as impact sub. His off ball work (particularly from second half) still lacking. We could have got Mahrez a season or so ago. Or Ziyech or even Fekir. Go figure. This current Arsenal DoF (… Read more »

Right Across Sunderland!

The lad has..

pace
stamina
dribbling ability
skill
a good first touch
two good feet
aerial prowess
the ability to find space
a knack of being in the right place at the right time
strength and defensive skill. He can tackle and barge
fire in his belly

Aaaaaaand about 5 years left on his contract. Deserves to start most games for me.

OnTheRightPath

I wish I could up vote this comment multiple times. I have been excited by many young players in the past and for good reason. But I have never seen such a complete footballer as martinelli at such a young age. He has to play.

Jason Tully

Martinelli – is a massive bright spot in this terrible season – he’s got the skill, pace, hunger and that South American heads as nails attitude. Love him – so humble and just wants to play football – so freaking

Frankie

Hey guys Martinelli is a proper wonder boy… and the sky is the limit…. he had such potential and genuine talent and arrogance on the ball it’s scary… so yes he needs games but we need to balance it as we don’t want him getting burnt out and suffering a long term injury… ps…. I have looked at the comments and 90% of them have nothing to do with Martinelli…. let’s keep on topic….