Arsenal legend, Ian Wright has given his opinion on the recent performances of Arsenal winger Gabriel Martinelli. The Brazilian has had an extremely slow start to the 2023/24 campaign by his standards, having only scored two goals in 17 Premier League appearances so far this season.
Last campaign Gabriel Martinelli was one of Mikel Arteta’s most important players, scoring 15 goals and recording five assists in 36 Premier League games. So what has changed this season which has caused a major drop in the Brazilian’s form?
Ian Wright thinks Mikel Arteta is failing to play to Gabriel Martinelli’s strengths, saying that the 22-year-old winger needs to be more involved in build-up play.
Ian Wright on Gabriel Martinelli: “You look at our build-up play, and it’s very Saka-orientated. Odegaard – Saka, Odegaard – Saka. And when you look at Martinelli, especially earlier on when he was doing what he was doing. He was torching people.
“I would love to see at some stage Mikel find the same kind of service to him as quickly as they possibly can because he is somebody that wants to go past on the outside or on the inside.
“If Martinelli gets the ball and there’s two behind, Martinelli, we know that he will try to take them on, but on the main, he will come back and pass it back.
“I hate to see Martinelli going back the other way because the ball has not got there quick enough. Those are the things that I am thinking we have to be quicker in getting the ball to him.”
Arsenal most recently lost to West Ham United at the Emirates Stadium with the Gunners attack failing to click so far this season. Mikel Arteta’s side had 30 shots during the 90 minutes, compared to West Ham’s six, however it was the Hammers who left North London with all three points.
It’s not just Gabriel Martinelli who is struggling in front of goal. None of Arsenal’s attackers have managed to score over five Premier League goals this season and we’re over halfway through the campaign. Eddie Nketiah is actually the Gunners’ top scorer with five league goals.
It’s no surprise Mikel Arteta is desperate to sign a striker in January in the hope of turning Arsenal’s form in front of goal around. The club’s number one target is Brentford’s Ivan Toney with the Gunners expected to make their move for the striker very soon.