'I got sad': £6m Arsenal player admits he was upset when Arteta left him on the bench last season
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'I got sad': £6m Arsenal player admits he was upset when Arteta left him on the bench last season

Gabriel Martinelli has spoken about how he felt last season when Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta put him on the bench.

At the start of last term, Martinelli had a period of five Premier League matches where he was an unused substitute, as per Transfermarkt.

Those games saw Arsenal lose 5-0 to Manchester City before beating Norwich, Burnley and Tottenham and then drawing 0-0 with Brighton.

Then, in the next five games, he was an unused substitute twice more, and came on for a combined total of 11 minutes in the other three.

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Martinelli frustrated when Arteta left him on the bench

Then, he came off the bench to score in a 2-0 home win over Newcastle in the early days of Eddie Howe’s reign, and that seemed to turn things around for him.

In an interview on Arsenal legend Ian Wright’s ‘Wrighty’s House‘ podcast, Martinelli has admitted his frustration during those tough moments.

Martinelli said of being on the bench: “I got sad. I want to play, if you don’t want to play you’re in the wrong job. I didn’t give up – I was always trying.”

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Martinelli cost just £6 million (Goal) when he joined the club from Ituano as an 18-year-old in July 2019, and would be worth a lot more now.

Last season, he really offered a reminder of what he could do after fully recovering from the injury which held back his progression.

He had to be patient, but now looks a key part of Arteta’s plans, although the competition for gametime continues next season, and the Spaniard may even bring in one more wide forward before the end of the window.

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