Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has been overlooking Gabriel Martinelli all-too often of late, and it is a struggle to figure out why…
Last night was the perfect opportunity to throw the youngster some first-team minutes. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Bukayo Saka were both rested after their exploits in the Europa League on Thursday, but Willian and Lacazette were preferred to come into the starting eleven.
Our side took a firm grasp on the game 52 minutes in, which again you would have thought would be a great opportunity to give minutes to those who were lacking, and Martinelli was again overlooked.
Instead, after 83 minutes the manager opted to bring Aubameyang on, which was the biggest shock when considering Gabi’s recent lack of playing time, and this has led to some deeper thinking…
The manager is always banging on about his players need to be showing him in training that they are committed to the cause, and putting in the hard work, reiterated when speaking about Willian of late.
The former Chelsea star returned to form this week after a number of below-par performances, and his outing yesterday may have even earned him a break amongst the fans, but what is Martinelli doing wrong?
The coach was asked about his latest snub after the Leicester clash, and I’m still perturbed about why the future star remained an unused substitute on Sunday.
Arteta told reporters after the game (via the Metro): ‘Well he needs to keep working and make it difficult for us [to leave him out].
‘He’s a player that is going to give us a lot but he needs some time.
‘We need to find the right games for him and the right connections for him on the pitch to do what he can do best.
‘But the way he is, the way he trains every day, he’s going to be a really important player for us, no doubt.
‘But when you have many options on the bench it’s difficult when you look for certain qualities in certain games.’
Either we are missing something here, or the manager is simply avoiding using him for absolutely no reason at all apart from because he can.
Martinelli has shown passion, ability, and crazy raw talent, and should at least be able to get 20 minutes of action a week with our hectic playing schedule at present.
Do we think Gabi has done something behind the scenes to upset the manager? Could Arteta be risking the player’s happiness by continually overlooking him?