Mikel Arteta has asked for patience from Arsenal fans calling for Brazilian starlet Gabriel Martinelli to feature more often.
The 19-year-old has excited Arsenal fans for a while now, with the Brazilian’s potential among the highest in Europe.
However, Martinelli has only featured 14 times this season, despite Arsenal’s attack coming under criticism.
That has lead to calls from fans and pundits alike asking for the Brazilian to be given a chance.
Arteta chose to start Martinelli when Arsenal faced Sheffield United on Sunday, with the forward scoring his first goal of the season.
The Arsenal manager has now urged fans to be patient regarding Martinelli’s inclusion.
“I’m asking you to be patient because we have a lot of players at 19 and 20 years old,” Arteta explained, as quoted by the Independent.
“When you compare that with a lot of Premier League clubs at the top end it’s not common. Gabi’s having the right path, the right development, he’s got an incredible attitude and talent and has got all the future in front of him.
“What we have to do is to manage that, try to give him the right amount of minutes, the right games for him to develop to continue to get better.
“I respect that people want to see more of him, and Gabi did really well, but we have to be patient. He is getting the right development.”
SL View – Should Martinelli be starting more often?
While Arteta is right to advise caution regarding Martinelli’s development, the Spaniard is being too cautious with his future star.
With several Arsenal forwards coming under criticism and Arteta needing some positive results for his future, there would be little harm done if Martinelli was let off the leash.
The Brazilian clearly has talent and an eye for goal, something Arsenal could benefit from in their pursuit of the Europa League trophy and a route into next year’s Champions League.
His work rate is also something that has impressed fans and neutrals alike, a polar opposite to the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang when the chips are down.