The former Gunner is pleased to hear that another setback suffered by the Brazilian forward is less serious than initially thought
Gabriel Martinelli being forced back onto the sidelines for a prolonged period of time would have been “heartbreaking”, says Kevin Campbell, with the former Arsenal striker relieved to hear that the Brazilian’s latest knock is not as bad as first feared.
The talented 19-year-old broke down just four games into his return to the Gunners fold from a long-term knee problem.
Martinelli was ruled out of a meeting with Newcastle after turning his ankle in the warm-up, with Mikel Arteta admitting afterwards that he was not expecting good news.
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Arsenal have, however, offered an encouraging update on their South American forward, saying in a post on the club’s official website: “Gabi turned his right ankle during the warm-up against Newcastle United on Saturday and was subsequently taken out of the starting line-up.
“Gabi has progressed very well and we’re hoping that he will return to full training with the squad in the next few days.”
Campbell has welcomed that assessment, with the former Gunners striker as relieved as Martinelli is that he will not be forced onto the treatment table for long.
He told Football Insider: “I wasn’t quite sure what the issue was.
“He has been out for such a long time that when he picks up an injury in the warm up you fear the worst.
“Fingers crossed he is going to be back in training this week so it does not look to be that bad. It is great news for the football club, great news for him and a relief for him.
“He put in so much work to get himself back fit, and he was so impressive against Chelsea, to get injured again would have been heartbreaking. I am really pleased for him.”
Martinelli, who hit 10 goals during his debut campaign at Emirates Stadium in 2019-20, missed nine months of football due to the coronavirus lockdown and a serious knee injury picked up during training in June.
He has told the Daily Mail of a long road to recovery: “I was about to receive the ball and felt a little pain on my knee.
“Not enough for me to stop practising, but, while we were on the finishing session, I told them that I was in pain. They told me to rest and, if I felt the pain the next day, to let them know.
“When I woke up, I felt it but I was able to walk. I thought it was nothing at first, but it was a pain I’d never felt before. I went to the club for the examinations and they said it was not good and I would need surgery. It broke me. I cried a lot.”