What can we expect from Gabriel Martinelli?

Arsenal’s first signing of the summer has been brought to add width

What can we expect from Gabriel Martinelli?

Gabriel Martinelli is an 18 year old forward who predominantly plays as a left winger or striker. The Brazilian was signed for a relatively small fee of around £6 million, becoming the club's fifth most expensive teenager. In 2018, Martinelli became the youngest ever player to debut for Ituano FC, at just 16 years old, having shown his sky high potential whilst playing for Ituano Under 20s. Martinelli scored 10 goals in 34 for the Brazilian Serie D side last season. This return on top of his overall performances was more than enough to convince Arsenal to make a move. Showing his promise through his goal scoring ability, Martinelli was called up to the Brazil squad in May, alongside the likes of Neymar, Coutinho and Firmino. Although he did not make the Copa America squad in June, this shows Martinelli has the potential to become a regular in the Brazil squad.

But what would Martinelli bring to Arsenal?
Martinelli looks to be a long term solution to Arsenal's winger problem. In the upcoming season it is unlikely we will see too much of the young forward. However, as he gains valuable experience in England, the Brazil international has all the potential to feature regularly for Arsenal.

In terms of playing style, Martinelli styles his game on Ronaldo.  With his direct approach Martinelli's strengths are:

  • His pace. A strength in Martinelli's game is that he is able to utilise his pace on and off the ball. This makes him a defender's nightmare. The young Brazilian is not afraid to run at defenders and can also press at high intensity.
  • Aerial ability. At 5'9 Martinelli isn't the tallest of players, but what he lacks in height he makes up for in jumping and aerial strength. Martinelli has scored a barrage of headed goals for Ituano beating taller centre backs in the process.
  • Dribbling. At times Martinelli strikes a resemblance to a young Ronaldo with his dribbling technique. At times the former Ituano forward has shown glimpses of being able to dribble between players like cones, in Messi-esque style. If this can be adapted this to the Premier League, the Brazilian has all the potential to become world class.
  • Composure and final ball. At his young age, one of his most prominent attributes is his composure. Martinelli naturally seems to be able to anticipate the perfect moment before playing a pass. This has been shown in his game as the new Arsenal man bagged a number of assists playing quality through balls. This is certainly needed at Arsenal.

How would Martinelli be deployed?
Naturally, the Brazilian born forward naturally plays as a winger out on the left. However for Arsenal, Unai Emery usually goes with a 3-4-1-2, meaning the Sao Paulo born foward will likely be deployed up front.

That isn't necessarily a bad thing. The way that Emery likes to play is by having one of the strikers push out wide when Arsenal are on the attack. This was shown last season as last season one of Aubameyang or Lacazette would usually have been seen out wide helping one of the wingbacks.

The reason why this is done is to create overload, to isolate the opposition's full back. Usually this is to drill a cross in to the other striker or cut the ball back to a player running in.

Playing a second striker in this system could be a good piece of business for Arsenal, and a good move for Martinelli. As mentioned earlier, this role would play to most of the Brazilian's strengths. This being as a natural winger he would get to spend a lot of time out wide. Furthermore Martinelli would get to showcase his dribbling and his final ball abilities, getting lots of opportunities to create chances.

Lastly, and most obviously, playing as a second striker would allow Martinelli to prove his goalscoring ability. As an 18 year old for Ituano, the forward scored 10 in 36. With quality players around him there is no doubt that Martinelli can develop in to a quality forward and has all the potential to become a first team regular very soon.

Although it might not have been the marquee signing most Arsenal fans would have wanted to open the window, I think Martinelli is good business.

Having seen the shortage of wingers in the team, it was the right move for Arsenal to look for a long term solution. With his direct approach, Martinelli is a very good investment and has bags of potential to become something special.



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  1. Colonel Blimp

    Jul 10, 2019, 10:15 #114349

    What the hell, let's get Neymar, especially if it's on a year long loan from PSG. What have we got to lose. If he gets injured or throws another strop, who cares?

  2. itsRonagain2

    Jul 8, 2019, 20:23 #114348

    It’s right about the 20 to 30 yr olds loving what’s going on. I’ve a nephew who enthuses over the Club. They’ve seen nothing else though. They love the glitzy glass bowl , revel in the 90s early noughties history tho few saw a game back then. Many are Ozil fans. It’s staggering for any body over 45. Are thryvright or wrong? Who knows.? You pays yr money and takes yr choice. I guess. Personally I think it’s hard to focus on much that’s likeable about AFC? I wouldn’t encourage a child of mine to follow the club for sure nor no other London club. All pretty dislikable for myriad of reasons. The PL is an odious organisation. All of this is good for lower level footie though. The championship is a great league and many people have gravitated to lower tier football this last 10 years. You hear the latest Neymar saga and it’s sums it all up. Average players lauded as great in a circus played in a cash swamp. As said by others while the mugs buy the season tickets and match tickets and the shirts etc the TV will lap it up and so will yr Kroenkes of this World. It’s needs boycotting. The TV wdt hang around long if fans voted with their feet and neither would these shit owners of which the majority in the PL are.

  3. Exiled in Pt

    Jul 8, 2019, 19:14 #114347

    It will only get worse... Dick will keep them in the top 6 that will be enough for SK. Freddie will take over the reigns when Dick goes.. While the muppets continue to buy the new shirts and the season ticket holders have paid for their seats. SK will continue to sit back and settle for the cash. Many of us said it was not just le fraud and Ivan that needed outing but the owner too. Not to worry as the new men above the coach would solve all our problems, looks like the same shit to me! Same organ grinder just different monkeys towing the club line..... I bet David Mr Arsenal Dein sleeps well at night along with all the other board members who sold this club down the river...


    Jul 8, 2019, 18:52 #114346

    Quite unbelievable situation. So now bloody Edu is apparently our new saviour, our Messiah. So looking forward to more, unknown teenage kids arriving from South America - complete with air miles if they are any good & have to fly back for meaningless internationals. Only light note this evening, Marky's "Bruce Rioja". Quelle grand mess - inept, incompetent Club!

  5. markymark

    Jul 8, 2019, 18:15 #114345

    Hi Ron2 - apparently Unai is our Bruce Rioja - I know it’s very bad, but..... in every joke there is so a truth !

  6. Cyril

    Jul 8, 2019, 17:17 #114344

    I’ve been advised 32 out of the 146 exec boxes remain unsold and will be hocked out on a match by match basis. I just don’t get it. It’s got to be a form of self harm. Ofcourse not, they know what they are doing -eh!!!!

  7. Seven Kings Gooner 1

    Jul 8, 2019, 17:10 #114343

    I talk to a few young Arsenal fans - in their 20 & 30's and they are very optimistic, they love the new shirt, think we will make some good signings and are very hopeful for the future - ah bless! Whereas yours truly, a cynical old b*stard thinks all Arsenal fans are being royally ripped off again, I just ask them if they think we will challenge for the league this season and none expect us to so why are they happy? They are happy because SK has played a blinder with his low key, low expectations management team who are actually making many of our supporters think we have good players in our team. Even in the sixties we had a couple of stars in the team and I do genuinely think the then management wanted to win trophies. Soon relegation from the Premier League will be removed and many assorted ways of not getting relegated will be offered as agents run the players and the show biz events called Premier League football.

  8. itsRonagain2

    Jul 8, 2019, 09:05 #114342

    Hi Marky - good points. We got him though mate because he came relatively cheaply, doesn't rock the boat or at least no history of it yet and because he would have agreed in advance to work on a low budget and withing a management chain above him that he would also have known about too. I wouldn't be at all surprised either if he joined AFC after the club sought Wengers view. Dick really meant that the club carries on as normal or shades of' the King is Dead, long live the King'. Dick would have seen Arsenal as progression in his career no doubt but lets not kid ourselves, he wasn't brought in to make radical, bold changes. The Club/SK were not ready or willing for that type of upheaval. He is truly the man that followed Wenger. Not quite our Moyes, but very similar. The acid test for the club will come with the appointment after Dick.

  9. Don Howe

    Jul 7, 2019, 21:00 #114341

    I think that we are getting a trifle overwrought. The club has assets and several million tourist couch spuds who are hooked on the bull dish. Emery. Has a million times more nous than the French fraud. If we are moving Ozil on then that is a huge bonus. Huge progress if. Only because it means that we will be playing our games with 11 rather than ten men. To get that useless piece of merchandise off our wage bill and squad is just the best news since Wunger was sacked. I would of course have preferred disciplinary proceedings and a claim for damages in both cases but any port in a storm. The management team look weak but the truth is that we just don’t know. There is something we can do. The slogan everywhere should be “ It’s the defence stupid”. Tee shirts banners and so on and so forth. Let’s ram it down their throat until they are sick of the sound of it. We know the history of our club even if they don’t.

  10. Don Howe

    Jul 7, 2019, 21:00 #114340

    I think that we are getting a trifle overwrought. The club has assets and several million tourist couch spuds who are hooked on the bull dish. Emery. Has a million times more nous than the French fraud. If we are moving Ozil on then that is a huge bonus. Huge progress if. Only because it means that we will be playing our games with 11 rather than ten men. To get that useless piece of merchandise off our wage bill and squad is just the best news since Wunger was sacked. I would of course have preferred disciplinary proceedings and a claim for damages in both cases but any port in a storm. The management team look weak but the truth is that we just don’t know. There is something we can do. The slogan everywhere should be “ It’s the defence stupid”. Tee shirts banners and so on and so forth. Let’s ram it down their throat until they are sick of the sound of it. We know the history of our club even if they don’t.

  11. markymark

    Jul 7, 2019, 17:02 #114339

    Ron2 - I’m sure Dick would get jobs after Arsenal but the arc or whatever will be pitched lower. His three Europa’s will count for something but I doubt he will be given a role at the top table. Therefore Spain , Italy or Germany will call but it will be at Real Sociadad not Real Madrid. We got Dick as he had something to prove. If PSG has gone really well then he’d be pressing for Juve , Bayern or even Real Madrid. A failure at Arsenal will not be good for his career no matter how disfunctional we are. He will be seen as second tier of at least confirmed as that level. Nothing wrong in that but that’s where he is. The trick is to get a second tier manager on an upward trajectory that’s the difficulty .

  12. Exiled in Pt

    Jul 7, 2019, 16:23 #114338

    10 goals in 34 games in the Brazilian 4th division (state championship)!! You can go on you tube and watch Nelson scoring 7 in 19 in the bundesliga for god sake. Because he is Brazilian and someone has put together a couple of minutes montage of goals and dribbling we are supposed to be impressed...

  13. OneBardGooner

    Jul 7, 2019, 14:45 #114337


  14. itsRonagain2

    Jul 7, 2019, 14:22 #114336

    Was that a collapse at the Seasons end? I m not so sure. Collapse implies bad form and other matters affecting a team that were either unanticipated or uncontrollable. To me, it was the Club ie Coach. Management above him and players deciding to focus on the EL and not the PL 4th place holy grail. Bit daft I thought esp knowing Chelsea were waiting Those games at seasons end were winnable even playing below par. If I’m right, serious doubts are raised against Dick. If I’m wrong there are still serious doubts if it was a genuine collapse. Dick seems ok and I m backing his 2nd season but he doesn’t fill me with the belief he s the man to turn it round to be honest. Add to that the shambolic framework above him plus the shit owner and we ve a recipe for moderacy for yrs to come whoever they appoint after Dick. He ll get decent jobs abroad I m sure. Let’s face it, when did failure ever put a football manager into perma unemployment? He cd even join the ranks of the failure squad in that PL with Fat Allardyce. Moyes. McCarthy McLaren and Co. Always room for new younger recruits in that esteemed fraternity.

  15. markymark

    Jul 7, 2019, 11:06 #114335

    CG - let’s just hope the Fenerbahce rumours are correct . Their El Presidente is saying there’s a 51% chance of the glorious Ozil joining them on loan. Many tears will be shed....... of joy !


    Jul 7, 2019, 09:34 #114334

    Hi Marky. The Trumpster regime has today been described as inept & insecure - if you add the word "smug" to that then I think you have a pretty good description of his best mate Stanley's Arsenal. The current, chaotic instability in the management structure is bringing chickens home to roost. I defend Dick because he was a sound choice to bring in as COACH - he is now, through failings elsewhere, being asked to be recruiting officer as well! He is also being criticised for favouring the bringing in older, experienced & cheaper players because he has to try & make a success of his second year. I do not see many, apart from Sokratis, in the present squad who will provide the stability for the youngsters if we are going to go for another "project youth" so this seems sensible thinking. All the "elite" managers that we wanted at the time of his signing on have all spent big to achieve success but, we are told, AFC has no money so what is the poor bloke to do - I bet he didn't realise what a shit show he was buying in to. By the way PSG don't seem to have done any better since replacing him with yet another up & coming new young manager. With his european CV & age profile Dick would, imo, easily get another top job. I agree that the end of season collapse was a worry but I am not sure that he alone was responsible as there seems to be no PR or sense of order in the Club these days. Before his arrival I was pretty keen on us acquiring Rafa B. but I am damned sure he would have walked by now. Finally, I don't think it fair to say Dick is hostage to that waster Ozil - THE WHOLE DAMNED CLUB IS!!

  17. Cyril

    Jul 7, 2019, 08:24 #114333

    CG- agreed. I do feel for Emery. It probably takes a while with language barriers to work out the whole thing is fixed. The owners never intended putting money in win the big prizes. It was a perfect storm when the Oligarch and Shake your Corry got involved. We can’t possibly compete etc is the mindset and so the great Arsenal masses will understand if we just collect our money each year. Sign up to the devil and be in top 4 each year- thank you very much. Well that’s over it seems. We have our own Dick, but he won’t be shaking it at anyone with this regime!

  18. markymark

    Jul 7, 2019, 07:20 #114332

    Cornish I get where your coming from but this romantic Dick trailing off into the sunset I don’t think fits the reality. If Dick cocks up at Arsenal then he’s mid table Spanish fodder. We can quote disfunctuonal Arsenal all we like but he will suffer personal damage. Stan wasn’t responsible for the horrendous end of year slump . Unfortunately set against his very good Europa record is examples of blundering at PSG. We know they were disfunctional as well. But he didn’t sort out the players and became a hostage of Neymar. Seems he’s a hostage of Ozil at Arsenal. So I do wonder if his own weak areas are getting magnified at the bigger clubs.


    Jul 6, 2019, 19:52 #114331

    If you have a rubbish owner in an industry awash with cash then, inevitably, he will by default introduce a massively expensive, directionless, couldn' t care less management structure - which is what we seem to have presently. Would any of this top team give a shit if they got their P45s? Maybe yes because when that sort of income is on offer you always want more. But for us normal folk , it would be quite nice to walk away with a few £million in the old bank account wouldn't it? Why on earth should we make excuses for the joint worst owner in the EPL Personally, I feel for Dick. Those 3 Europas on his CV are no mean achievement plus the fact that he also seems a proper sort of chap - very polite & an interesting line in english speak. As things stand I hope that he will walk away from AFC, head held high, leaving the odious Stanley to face the music he so richly deserves.

  20. itsRonagain2

    Jul 6, 2019, 13:20 #114330

    The Dickster is only there because SK felt he had to react to what fan pressure there was v the last diabolical regime and even then he did it with Wengos compliance and acceptance. Had the pressure towards Wengo have been only slightly less, Wengo would still be there. Thats the type of Club AFC are now and has been for at least 10 years. A Club happy to drift along with the crowd, hoping not to get noticed too much.

  21. markymark

    Jul 6, 2019, 12:40 #114329

    Bard - it makes sense , it also has to be asymmetric warfare as he’s got the money and power. So it’s a bit like the McDonalds 6 or radical environmental groups. My view is a mass stay away will cost Emery his job first as the excuse will be the football lacking entertainment . The Asymmetric side of things is linking his businesses to Arsenal’s woes so he finds he’s getting grief and incidents across his networks. Some will say he won’t care but ultimately he would as it becomes socially embarrassing. Ultimately can Arsenal supporters be bothered yet? Most will be willing to give Emery a season and then concentrate on pro / anti factions. Some clubs seem to be ok with rubbish owners. Indeed what constitutes a rubbish owner? Jesus Gill at Athletico constantly interfered and sacked one manager after another to little effect. But look at them now. Kronke is a leave it in a disinterested way , but he would argue he is appointing professionals to run it properly. I go back to at least 3 managerial sackings and Arsenal heading for 10th before the hi light really shines on Kronke

  22. Bard

    Jul 6, 2019, 08:05 #114328

    Marymark, my view is that the only way to get rid of Stan is to not attend matches and stage protests over a period of time that really hurts the brand. Anything else is a waste of time. Also I think you are over estimating the amount of planning and thought that goes on at Arsenal. Our transfer policy over the last decade has mostly been total chaos climaxing with the signing of Kim Kallstrom. The only signings who have maybe earned their money in a decade are Kos, Monreal, Auba and Lacazette, possibly Cech if youre being generous. The rest have been average to hopeless. The only academy player to come through was Jack as a 17 year old, no one else of note has pushed through. As I have posted before if we get off to a shocker I can see Dick being gone by Christmas. Dismal times ahead.

  23. markymark

    Jul 5, 2019, 15:54 #114326

    Often a sign that things aren’t firing on all cylinders when you see lurching from one plan to another. Anyone with time served in big corporates has seen it happen. In this case it appears Edu is now been given his licence to get involved ( I’m making an assumption it’s Edu’s pick ) previously it was Svens pick and if we can point Litchensteiner at Dick. One rumour site has suggested Arsenal are hard to deal with due to the internal setup not working. It sounds like a cut price version of UTD and their troubles. I’m wondering about Stan and whether it will go from being savvy investment to millstone. Those who want Stan out might have to put up with real institutional failure and crisis on the pitch to see him off. The problem is most of us don’t want to completely wreck the club we love. Most of us are middle of the road types not Shining Path Maosists ready to oversee entire destruction. The best that can be said is that Arsenal are looking to acquire top10 players in their age group. A young lad called up for Brazil is going to full of promise. I guess if we hit a 20% hit rate with the 20% being transfer material for Real Madrid and Barcelona it’s starting to get where we need to be.

  24. Seven Kings Gooner 1

    Jul 5, 2019, 12:51 #114325

    What does this say to our academy players? or perhaps better, what is the point of having an academy? He will not start any PL games and if he does he will get eaten alive. For the last time Arsenal Football Club, we need three world class defenders, if you can't get three, one will do! These signings are wasteful and meaningless.

  25. itsRonagain2

    Jul 5, 2019, 12:27 #114324

    Hard to know what to make of this signing. Its always hit or miss signing Brazilians. He ll maybe never get a game and in 18 months time we ll probably be asking ' what happened to that Marinello lad ' and some body will answer ' who, Peter Marinello?..... and we ll say, 'no you fool, the Brazilian lad' and the answer will be ' ooh i dunno, i think he went to play for FC Antwerp or went back to Brazil'

  26. Colonel Blimp

    Jul 5, 2019, 12:24 #114323

    Who wrote this, his agent?

  27. Pauljames

    Jul 5, 2019, 10:31 #114322

    A non sensical waste of 6 million quid .And if it’s true that we are going to spend 20 mill more on a youngster from St Ettiene only to loan him straight back it will confirm what we already knew: the lunatics have taken over the asylum.

  28. Bard

    Jul 5, 2019, 07:23 #114321

    Interesting article, bottom line is he wont get much game time, one for future or not. Is he that much better than Reiss ?We seem obsessed with wingers at the moment, a very Wengeresque situation. Cant help thinking that the club are in a right mess on the field and off it. We cant seem to off load the deadwood, surprise, surprise and we dont have any dosh to get quality in. Here's a prediction, if we get off to a poor start Dick will be gone by Christmas. Like most on here I see this season as another slide towards mid-table.

  29. mad max

    Jul 5, 2019, 06:11 #114320

    you're talking about this kid as though he was an established player, why oh why are we making these sort of signings we have reiss nelson who can play out wide but I doubt if he'll be given a chance this season. also the saliba deal if it happens is madness loaning him back for a season when we're desperate for defensive reinforcements. we've become a laughing stock. the wifred Zaha deal is baffling we don't need him,cant afford him so they tell us. nabil fekir is available for 30 mil why are we not signing him fantastic player?. Tottenham spend 65 mil on ndombele despite having a bill of a billion to pay for their new stadium. how did it ever come to this? I don't think emery has much say on who we sign, no wonder mstinlat left the club. we should have stayed at highbury we could have redeveloped the clock end to make it bigger. we we're sold a dream by people who sold their shares to a an American parasite. they're used to be a football club in N.5

  30. Exiled in Pt

    Jul 4, 2019, 15:33 #114319

    Great review of the young lad but can i just point out Walcott went to a world cup as he was such a prospect !! Just because he attended a bit of training with the Brazil squad , it does not mean he will suddenly be the next Ronaldo. Did we not hear all of this for Denilson who was the Brazilian under 18 captain ! For Wellington and even to a lesser extent Campbell none of them ever became what was claimed for them !! By the way Reiss Nelson last year played in the Bundesliga and scored 7 goals in 19 games a somewhat higher level of football than i would suggest serie D , certainly far more like the league we play in !! How about we play our kids and stop wasting money on players we do not need !! Money would be better spent on an English center half who has played in the PL .........