Mikel Arteta has perfect opportunity to unleash Arsenal ‘talent of the century’ v Aston Villa – TBR View
Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images

Mikel Arteta has perfect opportunity to unleash Arsenal 'talent of the century' v Aston Villa - TBR View

Arsenal are in Premier League action on Friday night, the Gunners hosting Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium.

Mikel Arteta and his charges will be eager to put things right after labouring to a 2-2 draw against Crystal Palace on Monday.

Only an injury-time Alexandre Lacazette equaliser spared Arsenal’s blushes against an Eagles side that outplayed the Gunners on their own patch.

Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Bukayo Saka was forced off in the game following a controversial challenge from James McArthur.

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On Thursday morning, Arteta said Saka hadn’t trained this week up until then, and would face a late fitness test.

“He hasn’t trained yet, so we have to assess him today and see how he is,” said Arteta.

As it turned out, Saka was later involved in training, suggesting he could be in line to start against Villa on Friday.

That said, the 20-year-old really could do with a rest, particularly after suffering a knock just a few days ago.

Therefore, Arteta has the perfect opportunity to give Gabriel Martinelli a start on the right wing.

Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

The 20-year-old has only made five appearances this season, of which three have come in the Premier League.

“Talent of the century… incredible striker”

Martinelli started in the losses to Brentford and Chelsea before having to made do with five consecutive league games on the bench.

The Brazilian did get nine minutes off the bench against Palace, but now would be a great time for him to get a start.

Martinelli has experience at RW – in the Brazilian league, against Burnley away in 2019-20, and against Wimbledon a few weeks back.

Although the Dons are obviously a lower-league team, he was nonetheless a bright spark, making things happen and driving well into the box.

Martinelli’s career has stalled somewhat since his impressive maiden season at Arsenal.

But a player Jurgen Klopp deemed a “talent of the century” surely merits more starts – and hopefully this will be the case against Villa.

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