Arteta Admits Surprise At ‘Unusual’ Martinelli


Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta said that he has been surprised by the quality of Gabriel Martinelli- even though he had been told to expect something special. The Gunners boss was speaking in his pre-Bournemouth press conference on Friday and admitted that the 18-year old has surpassed his high expectations.

“I heard a lot of things about Gabi before I joined and the moment I saw him in training, they were confirmed,” Arteta said.

“I think the way he competes and how brave he is in every single decision he makes is very unusual for an 18-year old. He competed with one of the best defenders in the league in Azpiliecueta and he got at him every time he got a chance.

“His fighting spirit is incredible and he is a goal threat every time.”

The Spaniard revealed that Martinelli’s attitude and fighting spirit were highlighted as attributes upon taking the role and Arteta has not been disappointed in that respect.

“I was told about his fighting spirit, how he goes for every ball, that he has great quality and every time he is in front of goal he is a threat.

“I was told ‘you will be surprised about how prepared he is to fight against every player in the squad.’ I thought, ‘yeah ok, he is 18’, but when you see him in big games and how he goes about everything, it is surprising.”

However, the manager is keen to keep the player on an even keel with Martinelli fever gripping the Premier League. Former defender Martin Keown said on Friday that the Brazilian ‘holds the future of the club in his hands.’ Arteta downplayed such talk.

“I would like to talk about potential more than what it is at the moment, because for him there is still a long way to do that every three days against big teams and with the stature of this club, it is not fair on him [to say he has the club’s future in his hands].

“I want him to train with his head down every day…it’s not about one or two days.”

Arteta said that Martinelli is giving him a good headache as he contemplates how to fit Aubameyang, Lacazette, Pepe and Martinelli into his attack and, crucially, who might drop out.

“It is my job to get the best players on the pitch and to decide whether to play with two, or three or four of them up top. I want the players to make it hard for me and the thing I asked when Auba was suspended was for players to step up and they did.”

One thing Arteta will not involve himself in is Martinelli’s choice of national side. The player carries dual Brazilian and Italian nationality, but the Arsenal Head Coach insists he has no business getting involved in that decision.

“I wouldn’t like to have that conversation with him unless he comes to me, because I don’t want to affect his feelings.

“It’s his choice and he knows better than me and his family and the people around him will be better than me to help him with that decision.”

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“Gaaaaabbbbbiiiiiiiiiiii!!!”, I exclaimed as the ball rolled into the Death Star


*as the ball rolled into the goal – felt like Luke shooting the cannons into the Death Star.


You really developed that Star Wars theme in the five minutes between posts eh?


Arteta continues to show outstanding leadership, a keen interest in his players as individuals. Certainly not riding the hype train but keen to keep the upward trajectory.

Artetas assistant

Yeah. He’s the best


Not gonna lie my mans surprised us all

Artetas assistant

First time I saw him sign, I went on his IG and he had pictures with his Fiancée or sth, I was looking at his eyes and somehow I knew this dude was with Ronaldoesque potential. I recognized The calm madness of a focused underdog, sizing up his bigger opponent just before the fight. I Probably capped my thoughts out here, then I did a question about which Arsenal player would be worth 100M first, I was thinking Martinelli. Someone said Pepe ? Success in this world is all about heart once you’ve figured out the basics (with top level… Read more »

Artetas assistant

Please don’t forget my post in moderation ??


No problem i’ll just forget your post in full.

Artetas assistant

It’s alright son

Martinelli fanboy

Dear Arteta,

We also heard a few things about you band you are confirming them. We don’t want to hype you up as the stature of the club demands you perform week in week out.

I reckon you might even be a good player manager.?

Just a fan.

Martinelli fanboy

Just thought that he reminds me of a young Christiano Ronaldo. Their determination seemed bigger than the talent they possessed.

Cultured determination

Arteta peobably thinking do you have any spanish heritage?

Naked Cygan

The kid is a talent for sure. But the key here, and the reason he stands out is the Fighting Spirit!! Something 90% of our players usually lack in most games. Wish his work rate and fire runs on the team.


Imagine a team where they all ran around like Gabby can in his role. Imagine if Virgil VD ran around like that. Sometimes generalizations like that are unfair and detrimental to reality and the wide variety of roles that players need to fill in a well run and balanced football team. I am inspired by the existing players, the energy and bravery combined with the current balance exhibited. I wish Ozil had a bit more of a tackle in him, I also accept the opinion of our fitness staff who have stated that Ozil is actually world class in his… Read more »

Evang. Simon

Hope he becomes our Messi.
After winning every trophy available for club and individual awards, he refuse to move to another club because of his love for The Gunners.

It takes special talents to hit double digits as a teenager when you are not a regular starter.


Martinelli seems to have everything in his locker. He seems to be the perfect all round striker. I was most surprised though by his pace when he ran the full length of the pitch to score against Chelsea. He must be one of the fastest players at the club. Would be interested to see where he matches up on those sprint tests they publish from time to time.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Where are the fans who said Martinelli failed his trials at many clubs? Are they hiding.?

Right Across Sunderland!

United somehow managed to reject him twice. And keep Jessie Lingaard. That takes a whole new level of stupidity.

I wonder how Martinelli managed to sneak a second trial? Perhaps he wore a fake beard and tache? A David Luiz wig?

Thank goodness Man Utd’s scouts are idiots is all I can say.


Bump up his contract and extend it already!! He’s literally just a kid and came from the 4th division in Brasil. Straight away he’s murdering seasoned pro’s, WC winners and all.
I’m serious about the bump and extend tho!

And as a Brazilian I so hope that he won’t choose to play for Italy. Don’t think he will tho.

Right Across Sunderland!

Twenty bazillion squids buyout clause yesterday, please. And give him a pay bump.

He seems level headed and not a complete nob like Anelka was too. Arteta is right in trying to keep his feet on the ground. Some fans think Keown was being irresponsible in saying that an 18 year old has the club’s future in his hands. I think he just got overexcited (he is a fan too) like a lot of us are about this kid.

Let’s hope we can keep him at the club and see him develop into ‘the new Ronaldo’ (sorry, I’m guilty too).


Definitely the bright spark from the summer window. Don’t think Edu is experience to fully have leverage on markets but he’s one for one at the moment so hopefully he’s right if this Spanish-Brazilian defender reject from City and Spain is signed. But Martinelli stark contrast to Pepe whom we’ve spent a whopping 72m on even if in installments. Hope someone gets in the face of the Ivorian, don’t give him any excuses. He needs to work far harder off ball and be more responsible on the ball particularly passing. When he loses the take on (which is often) he… Read more »

The Dream

Auba up top, flanked by Pepe & Gabi. Laca to come from the bench


Keown is such a twit. In terms of punditry, he has to be up there with the worst. Spouts the most spur of the moment stuff, gets carried away in moments, just like Neville.