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Ian Wright ‘very surprised’ by Mikel Arteta’s decision against Crystal Palace | Football Pi News


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Ian Wright was shocked to see Gabriel Martinelli on the bench (Image: PLP)

Ian Wright was shocked to see Gabriel Martinelli on the bench (Image: PLP)

Arsenal legend Ian Wright admits he was “very surprised” by Mikel Arteta’s decision to substitute Gabriel Martinelli against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

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The winger of the Brazilian national team was left out of the starting line-up and was replaced by the scorer Leandro Trossard only after the 69th minute.

Despite only being on the pitch for 20 minutes, Martinelli scored twice in the space of a minute as the Gunners ran out 5-0 winners.


Arsenal manager Arteta has questioned the decision to bench Martinelli, saying he wants to give Trossard a chance to impress.

‘[Trossard] deserved it,” said Arteta. “Obviously, with short-term changes, we need strength and innovation up front. He has a lot of experience in this league.”

Meanwhile, Wright told Premier League Productions after the 5-0 win for his former side: “When you put someone like Gabriel Martinelli on so much, the bar was so high that I’m really surprised it didn’t start.

“I’m very happy that he came on and made an impact. [His first goal is] very good finish. Very clear. Great, great.

Gabriel Martinelli scored twice in stoppage time for Crystal Palace (Image: Getty)

‘[With the second goal] Palace is everywhere, the midfield is nowhere near him, look how much space there is. Can he finish? Yes, he can.

“When teams are playing as badly as Palace, you have to use it. You can really punish those teams.

Martinelli has scored a total of 4 goals and provided two assists in 19 Premier League games for Arsenal this season.

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