By 90Min
June 18, 2019

Arsenal are set to have a relatively modest transfer budget at their disposal this summer, as their Europa League final defeat to Chelsea ensured that they will miss out on Champions League qualification for the third consecutive season and greatly reduced their transfer kitty. 

The Gunners are reported to have approximately £40m to spend this summer and therefore need to look for cheap recruits. They look to have done exactly that with the impending signing of young Brazilian striker Gabriel Martinelli.

Here are four things you need to know about the Brazilian prodigy.


He Is a Prodigious Talent

Identified by incoming technical director Edu and head of recruitment Francis Cagigao, Martinelli is one of the top rising stars in Brazil.

He made his professional debut in March 2018 at the tender age of 16, becoming Ituano's youngest debutant of the 21st century.

At just 17-year-old he was promoted to Ituano's senior team this season and helped guide his side to the quarter-final stage of the 2019 Campeonato Paulista, and was the club's top goalscorer with six goals.

He won the Campeonato Paulista Best Newcomer award and was also named in the Campeonato Paulista Team of the Year.


He's Had Trials at Barcelona and Man Utd

Martinelli has had trials with La Liga champions Barcelona and Premier League giants Manchester United

The young Brazilian had a trial with Manchester United in 2017 when José Mourinho was at the helm at Old Trafford, but the Red Devils chose not to sign him and he returned to Ituano.


Martinelli will get his chance to prove himself on a big stage with Arsenal and will look to show Barcelona and United why they were wrong to turn him down.


He Started His Career With a Futsal Side

Martinelli started his career with Corinthians but made his debut for the club's futsal side before he made his first professional football appearance.

Futsal is a five-a-side variant of football that is predominantly played on indoor hard courts in which there are unlimited substitutions.

While this may seem a peculiar career path in Europe, in Brazil and some others parts of South America futsal is hugely popular. It is credited with helping create technically adept, creative players due to the small surfaces that it is played in.

Martinelli looks to have benefitted from this and Arsenal fans will hope that he can showcase some of the flair he has gained from futsal at the Emirates.


He's Already Trained With Brazil's Senior Side 

A sign of Martinelli's meteoric rise has been that he has already trained with Brazil's senior team.

In May 2019 he was called up by Brazil manager Tite to help the side prepare for the Copa América. 

Being called up by Tite at such a young age shows how highly Martinelli is rated, and strong showings for Arsenal will surely help propel the 17-year-old into the Selecao senior side in the near future.

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