Gabriel Martinelli had his heart set on a move to Manchester United

22-year-old Arsenal attacking sensational Gabriel Martinelli wanted to join rivals Manchester United back in the day.

Gabriel Martinelli has been the talk of the town after scoring an 86th-minute winner against Manchester City in their last outing. The 22-year-old came off the bench and fired in the winner to claim all three points against the defending champions.

While the Brazilian international has been doing wonders for the London club over the past few seasons, he could have played for rivals Manchester United. Martinelli wanted to play for the Red Devils back in the day and he even trained with their youth squad.

Back when the 22-year-old was a part of Brazilain club Ituano’s youth team, he travelled to Manchester, England on four separate occasions to train with the Red Devils. He even featured for their under-18 team in a friendly.

Martinelli had his heart set on a move to United. He was desperate to join the Manchester-based club but things didn’t go according to plan. The Red Devils decided against signing the Brazil international back in the day.

Luiz Antonio Moraes who was the 22-year-old coach during his days in the Ituano’s youth team talked about how disappointed he was after missing out on a move to the Red Devils. Moraes said Martinelli was sad but he bounced back from the disappointment quite early and just kept working.

Moraes felt getting rejected by United might have pushed him to work even harder. He feels the 22-year-old has worked very hard to get at the top and he is a great example for every young player.

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Moraes on his failed move to Manchester United via The Athletic: “He was sad when the United move didn’t work out, but it didn’t last long,” says Moraes. “But he just kept working. Maybe even more than before. Ga is a great example for all young players. Things never went to his head.”

After missing out on a move to United, he managed to break into the first team of Ituano. And, in 18 months’ time, Arsenal came calling for the Brazil international. Since joining the Gunners back in the summer of 2019, he has gone from strength to strength.

Currently, he is a very important part of Mikel Arteta’s team and is amongst the best young wingers in the league. The 22-year-old was out injured in the recent past but he managed to mark his return with a match-winning goal against Manchester City. He is committed to the project at Arsenal and wants to stay there for years to come.

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