Mikel Arteta warns Arsenal sensation Gabriel Martinelli ahead of Newcastle clash

Gabriel Martinelli's emergence has been a been one of the highlights of Arsenal's season
Gabriel Martinelli’s emergence has been a been one of the highlights of Arsenal’s season (Picture: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has warned Arsenal sensation Gabriel Martinelli he will have to get used to being a marked man as a result of his stunning emergence this season.

The form of the Brazilian forward has represented the most uplifting aspect of a difficult season for Arsenal with the teenager having scored 10 goals in all competitions.

Martinelli’s versatility and work ethic have pleased his new manager who has used the former Ituano starlet in every match he has been available for since he took over in December.

The 18-year-old is almost certain to feature on Sunday against a Newcastle side who have proven to be obdurate opponents for some of the Premier League’s best teams this season and Arteta admits there is still a lot for Martinelli to learn.

‘He needs to digest a lot of things,’ Arteta told Sky Sports. ‘The better you do, the more you have to start to digest what people think about you.

‘He has to think ‘now, the opponents know me better, the spaces are smaller, I am going to have more attention. I still want to do what I was doing three weeks ago or four weeks ago, but now it’s not happening.’ As a young player, you need to go through that. The mental side of it is a process.’

Arteta has also regularly found room in his side for the likes of Matteo Guendouzi and Bukayo Saka, while he has also spoke in glowing terms of Reiss Nelson.

On working with youngsters, Arteta added: ‘I love working with a young player.

‘When I see potential and I see the hunger in their eyes to be the best, I cannot stop working with them because it’s a joy.

‘When you feel that energy from them, that is what you want, that love for what they do, and that is what I am getting from these players, absolutely. They are the future of the club.’

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