Rio Ferdinand has hailed Arsenal youngster Gabriel Martinelli as a ‘tremendous’ player and has predicted that he would become a ‘huge player’ if he stays fit.
The youngster – who joined in the 2019 summer window for a reported fee of £6m from Brazilian outfit Ituano – is rated highly at the club, and several Arsenal players and Mikel Arteta himself have showered high praise on him from time to time.
Last season, the youngster netted 10 goals from just 16 starts across all competitions. He has recently returned to action following a six-month spell on the sidelines, and Arteta has promised to use him wisely.
He impressed during Arsenal’s defeat against Manchester City and produced a superb performance last week in the London derby win against Chelsea.
On Saturday, Martinelli and Bukayo Saka ripped Chelsea apart as the Gunners secured their first Premier League win after seven games.
Ferdinand has spoken highly of the duo, but has reserved special mention for Martinelli.
“I watched Martinelli at Bournemouth away last season,” said Ferdinand on his Youtube channel. “Him and Saka together, and they have a link-up, they have a relationship that’s already there that I think in years to come would be a scary relationship. Scary.
“They work so well together. And Tierney as well on the left-hand side backing it up. But Martinelli, I have to say is going to be a tremendous footballer. Top player.
“He has come back into this team and he is showing what all the fuss was about before. He is going to be a huge, huge player. Massive talent. I am just hoping he can stay fit.”
Arsenal will face Brighton next in the Premier League on Tuesday night, and Martinelli could be given a rest considering the Brazilian’s fitness.
The likes of Saka and Martinelli are indeed the future of Arsenal, but they are under immense pressure due to Arsenal’s poor form.
Arteta will be hoping that some of the senior players at the club will step up and take more responsibilities, and help the club move up the table.