According to reports, Premier League giant Arsenal are allegedly closing in on the move of exciting Brazilian star Gabriel Martinelli for a transfer fee of about £6.5million.
The teenager seems the latest talented youngster to emerge from the South American nation of Brazil, who often produce outstanding youngsters who end up joining to clubs in the continent of Europe early on in their football careers.
Supporters of Arsenal will be delighted if they eventually sign this exciting young prospect, with 20-time English Champions Manchester United also having been keen on his services, as per the Sun.
The report suggests the Old Trafford-based club got a close look at the sensation as they had him at the club on trial, but the Brazilian himself prefers a transfer to North London giants Arsenal as he wants to be in the City of London and believes it would be the better option for the starlet to get regular first-team football very soon.
Both Gunners and the Red Devils have a reach tradition of promoting talented youngsters, but it’s also subject to probable less in the way of severe competition for playing position at the Emirates right now.
Spanish tactician Unai Emery would love to see more competition for unconvincing players like Nigerian international forward Alex Iwobi and Armenian international Henrikh Mkhitaryan in attacking position, so 17-year-old Martinelli could possibly get chances sooner than one could think.
The Gunners are willing to let him remain at Ituano, a club owned by former Middlesbrough star and FIFA World Cup winner with Brazil – Juninho, for the remainder of this calendar year before heading to England in the New year.
But the young South American needs to obtain EU citizenship first, which would sideline the need for the starlet to get a British work permit.
He does not turn 18-years until June 18 this year but the gunners may be able to make a move earlier if he can get an Italian passport, which could be done and dusted as early as May.