Gabriel Martinelli helped Arsenal to a come-from-behind 2-2 draw with Chelsea as he became the first teenager since Nicolas Anelka to reach double figures for Arsenal.

Martinelli is the teenager with the second-most goals in Europe’s top five leagues after Jadon Sancho with 10 goals and three assists in 21 appearances.
The unknown 18-year-old joined Arsenal from Brazilian Serie D club Ituano for £6 million last summer and scored a brace on his first start against Nottingham Forest in the EFL Cup.
The youngster hasn’t looked back since, proving a shining light for the squad.
He became the first player to score four in his first four starts for Arsenal since Ian Wright and is currently enjoying a run of League starts following Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s suspension against Crystal Palace; scoring two in two. 
Martinelli now firmly has the attention of the football universe following his fine goal and performance away at London rivals Chelsea.
Fortunate to not be taken off following compatriot David Luiz’s dismissal, the teenager was tireless in his running and hassling. He ended the game with more sprints (26) than anyone else on the pitch.
He constantly helped out fellow youngster Bukayo Saka in tracking Callum Hudson-Odoi and Cesar Azpilicueta across the left channel, also earning praise from his manager for being brave up against one of the League’s best defenders.
Martinelli’s biggest moment was undoubtedly Arsenal’s first equalizer, leading a counter attack following a Chelsea corner, the youngster profited from N’Golo Kante’s slip showing lethal composure in racing clear and finishing past Kepa Arizabalaga.
Martinelli speeding past Kante. (Getty Images)

The Gunners’ equalizer after going behind late in the game symbolizes their new-found character and work rate under new manager Mikel Arteta.



Possessing the exuberance that his age unsurprisingly brings; Martinelli is also willing to give his all to the team’s cause, looking knackered but nevertheless delivering the hard yards.

Moving forward, his attitude and exciting prowess reeks of untouchable in the starting lineup. Alexandre Lacazette’s ongoing dry spell makes him first candidate to drop once Aubameyang returns, as Arsenal have been heavily reliant on the Gabonese for goals.

What is an extraordinary story from the lower leagues in South America to cult hero status at the Emirates stadium within a year is yet to be fully written. 

As his manager revealed after the game, he didn’t take Martinelli off for defender Rob Holding ‘to send a message’ to his team about not giving up.

Par for the course. Martinelli embodies the spirit Arteta is trying to instill at Arsenal.

Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin

Chief Editor of the Football Castle, Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin is a football junkie and writer of the beautiful game.

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