The Brazilian has expressed his desire to “give back to the club” after making a bright start to his career at the Emirates Stadium
Gabriel Martinelli says he wants “to win the Champions League and lots of domestic titles” at Arsenal, with a view to cementing a place in the club’s hall of fame one day.
The 18-year-old joined the Gunners from Brazilian outfit Ituano in a £6 million deal last summer, shortly after being invited to train with Brazil’s national team in the lead-up to the 2019 Copa America.
The talented young striker was initially expected to join up with the academy side and continue his development, but he managed to force his way into Unai Emery’s first-team plans during the first half of the season.
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Martinelli has proven himself as a more than capable back-up forward behind Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette, scoring ten goals in 26 appearances across all competitions.
Mikel Arteta has also taken a shine to the Brazilian since being drafted in to replace Emery in the Emirates Stadium hot seat, and the future looks bright for a player who already seems to have adapted to the rigorous demands of English football.
Martinelli has already become the first teenager since a certain Nicolas Anelka to reach double figures in an Arsenal shirt, and he is now hoping to help the team chase down major silverware on both domestic and European fronts over the next few years.
“I want to win the Champions League and lots of domestic titles to make Arsenal’s fans very happy,” the Gunners starlet said in the April edition of FourFourTwo magazine.
“They deserve the best – not only the supporters but all of the club’s staff. I’d like to give back to the club after everything they’ve done for me so far and, as a result, become a Gunners legend.”
Arsenal chiefs made the decision to part with Emery after a seven-match winless run in November, with supporters turning against the Spaniard after 18 months of mediocrity.
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Arteta has steadied the ship since returning to the Emirates to coach the team he captained as a player, and Martinelli has been impressed with the 37-year-old’s “keen eye for detail”.
“He’s been brilliant. He pays a lot of attention to moves and keeps pushing me to improve my game; not only in attack but defence, too,” said Martinelli.
“The boss is very wise tactically and incredibly helpful. He’s not an angry guy at all, but likes showing you exactly what to do on the pitch: ‘If the ball goes that way, don’t stay here, go there and turn your body that specific way.’ He has a keen eye for detail.”