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Barcelona & United rejected Martinelli before Arsenal swooped in

Before the Brazillian was blossoming in North London, Arsenal had to snatch him up against hard competition!

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Gabriel Martinelli was only 17-years-old when the Gunners signed him for just £6million. Arsenal weren’t the only team trying to sign the Brazilian at the time with the player also in the eyes of Barcelona and Manchester United as well.

Before the goals, energy, and fancy footwork in an Arsenal shirt, Gabriel Martinelli was playing for a small club in Brazil called Ituano. After sparking interest from the big European clubs, Arsenal was one of those heavily interested in him.

Gabriel Martinelli playing in Brazil for Ituano before he signed for Arsenal in 2019.

Francis Cagigao, a former Arsenal scout, said that the Gunners had ‘major doubts’ about signing the winger. However, the other big European teams were also mulling their doubts about Martinelli. Once Arsenal saw the price tag, they swooped in.

Francis Cagigao on Gabriel Martinelli:

“We had doubts, but I started going to see him and he totally convinced me. Manchester United could have signed him, but they didn’t, and Barcelona too, he went on trial at La Masia. But they ruled him out and we went in there hard so he wouldn’t escape.”

Martinelli has blossomed and really stepped up this season. In 22 appearances in the Premier League this season, Martinelli has bagged 7 goals and got 2 assists.

For a young player and a £6million purchase, Martinelli has definitely proven his worth and after signing a new contract in North London this month, I’m sure there’s a lot more still to come…

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