Arsenal fear they could lose Gabriel Martinelli if they miss out on the Champions League. The 18-year-old forward has impressed since arriving from FC Ituano in last summer’s transfer window.
Martinelli, 18, has scored 10 goals in 24 appearances since making his debut as a late substitute on the opening day of the Premier League campaign.
Arsenal’s coaching staff believe the Brazilian is destined for the top – and a host of massive clubs are already monitoring his progress.
According to the Daily Star, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are keeping tabs on his development with interest.
While Arsenal believe they can keep Martinelli on their books, another season outside the Champions League elite could prove fatal to their hopes.
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The Gunners also have to contend with Barcelona weighing up a swoop for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at the end of the season.
Martin Braithwaite was signed as cover for Ousmane Dembele but the Nou Camp giants are expected to go for another forward in the summer.
The Daily Star claim Arsenal have decided they would rather cash in on Aubameyang than Martinelli.
The latter is considered a more important member of Mikel Arteta’s project.
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Arteta has attempted to ease the pressure on Martinelli amid the growing expectation for fans.
“I would like to talk about potential, more than what it is at the moment because for him there is still a long way,” the Arsenal head coach said.
“The stature of this club, to give him the key to do that straight away is not fair on him. We have to bring him down.
“I want him to train with his head down every day hard and slowly he will start to earn the praise if he does what he needs to do every day, but it is not about one or two days.”
Martinelli is in contention to start for Arsenal in today’s Premier League clash against Everton.
He was in the XI that began Thursday’s Europa League victory against Olympiakos in Greece.
Alexandre Lacazette netted the only goal of the game and could start for the Toffees clash having also netted in last weekend’s romp against Newcastle.
Arsenal could rise to eighth in the Premier League table if they earn all three points at the Emirates Stadium.
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