Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta faced the media ahead of his side’s second-leg clash against Olympiacos tomorrow.
The Spaniard was quizzed about his team selection over the last few weeks. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang stole all the headlines against Tottenham, but he wasn’t the only Arsenal player disappointed with Arteta’s decision.
Gabriel Martinelli was left out of the squad for the derby. He has played just 13 minutes of football since the start of February and Arsenal fans simply cannot understand why he’s not getting the game time we think he deserves.
Arteta was quizzed about the Brazilian and the Spaniard was adamant that Martinelli is doing everything right in training, but he just has to wait for his chance.
The Arsenal boss said, as per Arsenal.com: “No, if anything it’s my fault. He has done everything perfect, he trains incredibly well every day, his attitude cannot be any better. He’s disappointed he is not playing more obviously and I have spoken to him, but he needs to be a little bit patient.
“He had some minutes. He had some games as well and it’s true the competition for the front positions is very tough but he needs to be patient and he will get his chance.”
Should Martinelli get a chance against Olympiacos?
Martinelli has every right to be upset with Arteta’s decision to keep him away from the squad. Yes, he has had injury troubles, but whenever he’s on the pitch, he gives us something different, and that really is exciting to watch.
However, Willian’s recent form, Emile Smith Rowe’s performances on the left-wing, Nicolas Pepe’s resurgence and Bukayo Saka making himself undroppable has made things really difficult for Arteta as well.
With a two-goal lead and three away goals in the bank, Arteta should give Martinelli a run out. However, with a lot at stake, it won’t be a surprise to see him go with a full-strength side again.