Ian Wright has expressed surprise at Gabriel Martinelli being benched for Arsenal’s match against Crystal Palace. While the Brazilian’s current season hasn’t matched the heights of the previous one, he has struggled to score at the Emirates.
Arsenal boasts several options, especially on the wing, and Leandro Trossard was given the nod to start against Palace, contributing with one of the Gunners’ goals. Martinelli entered the game as a second-half substitute and made a significant impact by scoring twice, ultimately securing a 5-0 victory for Arsenal.
Despite Martinelli’s fan-favourite status and impressive contributions, Mikel Arteta has options in the squad. Arteta may consider Martinelli for a starting role in the next game based on his positive performance as a substitute against Palace.
While the decision to bench Martinelli surprised Wright, the Brazilian’s impactful display upon coming on as a substitute will likely be considered by Arteta for future starting lineups.
Wright said, as quoted by Metro Sport:
‘When you get someone like Gabriel Martinelli in that much space, the line was so high, I was very surprised he didn’t start.
‘I’m quite pleased he came on and made the impact he did. [His first goal is] a very good finish. Very accurate. Brilliant, superb.
‘[With the second goal] Palace are all over the place, the midfield is nowhere near it, look at how much space he has got. Can he finish? Yeah, he can.’
Just Arsenal Opinion
Martinelli came on and scored, which justified the decision to bring him on. He may not have made that much impact if he had started the game.
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