Arsenal boss Arteta: ‘Martinelli absolutely stepped up’
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta praised youngster Gabriel Martinell for ‘stepping up’ in the Gunners’ 2-2 draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night.
With the away side down to 10-men and a goal behind after David Luiz's red card and Jorginho's penalty, Martinelli got Arsenal back into the game with a superb solo goal on 63 minutes, capping off a brilliant performance from the Brazilian in the absence of suspended top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
It also continues a superb debut campaign for the 18-year-old - having joined from Brazilian fourth division side Ituano last summer - who now has 10 goals in all competitions, becoming the first Arsenal teenager to score 10 goals in a single season since Nicolas Anelka in 1998/99.
Arteta lauded Martinelli after full-time at the Bridge, saying: "To play in this stadium the way he's done, and with 10 men, and to play against Azpilicueta - who's in my opinion one of the best defenders in the league - you need courage to do that.
"Then his energy. I wanted to take him off a few times because he looked knackered. He was cramping and the next minute he's sprinting 60 yards again.
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"He absolutely stepped up."
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