Gabriel Martinelli was given his first start as a number nine in the Premier League during Arsenal’s 3-1 win over West Bromwich Albion.
With Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette left on the bench, the Brazilian wonderkid was handed an opportunity to live up to comparisons to his compatriot and former Real Madrid and Barcelona superstar Ronaldo.
“I think Martinelli is the one, I really do,” Campbell told Football Insider. “Martinelli was sensational when he came in last season. He is a real handful – strong, direct and reminds me of the Brazilian Ronaldo.
“The way that he picks up the ball and runs at goal is phenomenal. I am not saying that he is Ronaldo but he reminds me of him, especially with that goal he scored at Chelsea.”
However, the experiment didn’t quite go to plan against the Baggies.
It remains to be seen if Mikel Arteta persists with Martinelli as a centre-forward for Arsenal ‘s remaining three games of the season, but the teenager’s best role at the moment seems to be from the left-wing.
As a result, that could force the Gunners into a transfer rethink this summer.
Lacazette is fast approaching the final 12 months of his contract at the Emirates Stadium and whilst a summer exit would make sense for all parties, football.londonunderstands a concrete decision will be made at the end of the season.
The Frenchman, who replaced Martinelli in the second half, is Arsenal’s leading scorer this season and would need to be replaced adequately if he was to leave.
In a dream scenario for technical director Edu, Martinelli or Folarin Balogun step up to the plate in the remaining games, and all of a sudden the Gunners already have the perfect replacement for Lacazette to save them millions.
Not to mention, there’s also the option to move Aubameyang back to his favoured central role and keep him there.
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But if a more experienced number nine is what Arteta and Edu decide is what’s best for Arsenal next season then extending Lacazette’s contract would be the best way to go.
Otherwise, the alternative route would be to dip into the transfer market with Genk striker Paul Onuachu already issuing a come-and-get-me plea.
“I really like Arsenal,” he said, as per Sport Witness. “(Emmanuel) Adebayor is one of the players I have admired the most.
“I was a really big fan of him and (Nwankwo) Kanu. I really love watching Arsenal.”