Journo: Gabriel Martinelli shouldn’t start for Arsenal vs Man City

By on March 29, 2024

gabriel martinelli arsenal

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta will be eager to field his best players against Manchester City, but James Benge believes Gabriel Martinelli should not start the game on Sunday afternoon.

The match between Manchester City and Arsenal will be the highlight of this weekend’s Premier League Match Day 30. This game has major implications for the Premier League title race.

Arsenal head into this game top of the table with 64 points thanks to our superior goal difference to Liverpool, while Manchester City sit one point behind in third. A win for Arsenal would move us four points ahead of City, which would be a major boost for our title hopes.

Beating Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium has become tricky in recent years, with Arsenal last winning there in 2015. However, Arsenal must reverse this poor form on Sunday to increase their title chances.

If Arsenal are at full-strength, we can certainly trouble the defending champions. A fully-fit Martinelli would almost certainly occupy the left wing, as he’s become a key player in Arteta’s attack over the past two seasons.

The Brazilian got a nasty gash on his foot during Arsenal’s 6-0 victory over Sheffield United earlier this month and has sat out the last three games. In the lead-up to the Etihad Showdown, Football London reported that the Gunners are hopeful Martinelli will be fit t return against City.

Martinelli versus Manchester City

Many Arsenal fans are thrilled at the idea of Martinelli starting against City. However, journalist James Benge has urged Arteta to resist the urge to through the 22-year-old straight back in to action.

Speaking on Charles Watts’ YouTube channel, the journalist fears that Martinelli’s cut may reopen if he starts on Sunday so he feels Arteta should act with caution not to rush him back, especially with the Bayern Munich games coming up.

“I would probably play it safe with Martinelli as well, because you know that is an injury – a cut on your foot if you go play 90 minutes of football could well reopen no matter how well stitched up it is,” he stated.

“I think he would be the one I would apply the most caution to, and also he will be the one that could be most effective in the weeks ahead against Bayern, whoever they play at right back, especially for Joshua Kimmich, his pace would just be so valuable in those games.

“It just feels like he’s the one that would be the biggest gamble, so the one that you’re shrewdest to avoid messing with.”

Arsenal have a stacked fixture list coming up so Arteta must keep his best players fit. As much as it would be a big boost to have Martinelli back to face City, if his cut isn’t 100% healed then I’d agree with Benge and play it safe with the attacker.